Out West Series Continues at the Autry with Hidden Histories

By GLAAD |
May 12, 2010

"Hidden Histories," the Autry National Center’s second program in its Out West series, delves into uncharted territory highlighting accounts of individuals who lived gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender lives from the 1800s to modern times in the American West.

Objects on the gallery tour include Elizabeth Bacon Custer’s day dress from the 1870s, the Concord mail stagecoach from 1855, a post office letter box, cowboy gear, and other objects bearing stories related to the LGBT experience in the American West.

“With Hidden Histories, the Autry National Center weaves the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community into the rich tapestry of the American West,” said GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios. “It is so important for Americans to hear stories that reflect the diversity of the LGBT community and our presence throughout our nation’s great history. GLAAD is proud to endorse Out West.”

The Out West series is under the direction of Stephen Aron , professor of history at UCLA and executive director of the Institute for the Study of the American West at the Autry. Blake Allmendinger, a professor in the English Department at UCLA who specializes in teaching the literature of the American West, will provide the context for the evening in a keynote address. Leading the tour groups will be Jim Wilke, independent scholar and curator; Patricia Nell Warren, renowned Western historian and author of eight books, including The Front Runner; Carolyn Brucken , the Autry’s Associate Curator of Western Women’s History; and Jeffrey Richardson , the Autry’s Assistant Curator of Film and Popular Culture.

“The words ‘homosexuality’ and ‘heterosexuality’ did not commonly exist a hundred years ago, and we must take great care to be judicious as we consider the Autry artifacts from their own historical context. Scholarship on the contributions of the LGBT community to the history and culture of the American West is relatively new. Nevertheless, we were there, and with Out West—here we are. It’s our history, too,” noted Gregory Hinton, creator and producer of the Out West series.

Hidden Histories
Autry Museum of the American West
4700 Western Heritage Way
Los Angeles, CA 90027

Thursday, May 13, 2010
7:00–9:00 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
Complimentary refreshments to be served, with dinner available for purchase. Cash bar.
Free with museum admission. Tickets now available at the Museum’s Visitor Services Desk or by contacting Patty Carmack at 323.667.2000, ext. 389, or pcarmack@theAutry.org.

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