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Titles by Jim Elledge

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Titles Found: 2
An Angel in Sodom
An Angel in Sodom (3 Formats) ›
By Jim Elledge
Cloth Price 30.00

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Published Oct 2022

<strong>&quot;Makes the case that we should consider Gerber not an asterisk, but a forefather of the gay-rights movement—one who would influence later generations of activists.&quot;</strong><b>—<em>The Atlantic</em> </b><br /><br />Born in 1892 in Germany, Henry Gerber was expelled from school as a boy and lost several jobs as a young man because of his homosexual activities. He emigrated to the United States and enlisted in the army for employment. After his release, he explored Chicago’s gay subculture: cruising Bughouse Square, getting arrested for “disorderly conduct,” and falling in love. He was institutionalized for being gay, branded an “enemy alien” at the end of World War I, and given a choice: to rejoin the army or be imprisoned in a federal penitentiary.<br /><br />Gerber re-enlisted and was sent to Germany in 1920. In Berlin, he discovered a vibrant gay rights movement, which made him vow to advocate for the rights of gay men at home. He founded the Society for Human Rights, the first legally recognized US gay-rights organization, on December 10, 1924.<br /><br />When police caught wind of it, he and two members were arrested. He lost his job, went to court three times, and went bankrupt. Released, he moved to New York, disheartened.<br /><br />Later in life, he joined the DC chapter of the Mattachine Society, a gay-rights advocacy group founded by Harry Hay who had heard of Gerber’s group, leading him to found Mattachine. <br /><br /><strong><em>An Angel in Sodom</em> is the first and long overdue biography of the founder of the first US gay rights organization.</strong>
The Boys of Fairy Town
The Boys of Fairy Town (4 Formats) ›
By Jim Elledge
Cloth Price 29.99

Cloth, PDF, EPUB, Mobipocket

Published Jun 2018

A history of gay Chicago told through the stories of queer men who left a record of their sexual activities in the Second City, this book paints a vivid picture of the neighborhoods where they congregated while revealing their complex lives. Some, such as reporter John Wing, were public figures. Others, like Henry Gerber, who created the first "homophile" organization in the United States, were practically invisible to their contemporaries. But their stories are all riveting. Striptease artists Quincy de Lang and George Quinn were arrested and put on trial at the behest of a leader of Chicago's anti-"indecency" movement. African American ragtime pianist Tony Jackson's most famous song, "Pretty Baby," was written about one of his male lovers. Alfred Kinsey's explorations of the city's netherworld changed the future of American sexuality while confirming his own queer proclivities. What emerges from The Boys of Fairy Town is a complex portrait and a virtually unknown history of one of the most vibrant cities in the United States.