Tag Archives: National Trust Conference

Protecting Queer History Places

The National Trust for Canada is holding its annual conference in Toronto. It starts today, and its title is: The Heritage Reset: Making Critical Choices.

The conference is asking this question: “as the urgency increases to advance decolonization and anti-racism, take bold climate action, and redress economic and social inequity, are heritage principles and heritage places in step, or stuck in the past?” 

Specifically relevant to queer history, they are exploring the idea of a social-cultural reset. How can the heritage community embrace a fuller story and confront exclusion?

It’s a good question. Locally, has Calgary’s heritage community done enough to protect queer historic places and spaces in the city? The answer of course, from our perspective, is “no.”

To be fair, the City of Calgary created Lois Szabo Commons last year, and the Lougheed House did queer history programming in 2019. But where are our protected buildings, heritage plaques and interpretations of queer history sites? How do we make our relatively invisible queer history visible?

Earlier this year, the National Trust hosted a webinar on this very subject with Andrew Dolkart from the inspiring NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project. We encourage you to watch it.

In the next year, this will be a thrust of the Calgary Gay History Project. To date, we have been active in building the Calgary queer landscape through mapping projects and walking tours. It is time to agitate for queer inclusion in Calgary’s built heritage inventory.

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We Are Back!

Kevin Allen is now (almost) finished with the federal election so look forward to weekly posts from the research collective until the end of the year.

Lots has happened in the last couple of months.  Catch Kevin’s interview on Yeah, What She Said, Calgary’s only feminist radio program, airing every 3rd Monday each month on CJSW 90.9FM.  Ironically, the pre-recorded interview aired on election day, Monday October 19th!

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Tereasa, and partner Dan, in Ottawa on Parliament Hill. Gosh that statue looks familiar…

Tereasa Maillie represented us in Ottawa, October 15-17, at Canada’s Annual History Forum. She also had tea with the Governor General at Rideau Hall after attending the Governor General’s History Awards.  The Calgary Gay History Project was invited because of its honourable mention for excellence in community history programming.

National Trust

The 2015 National Trust Conference Gay History Tour. We are in front of the Cecil Hotel – what, the sign is gone…  Photo: Harry Saunders @harry_historian

Heritage Canada’s 2015 National Trust Conference was held in Calgary.  We were invited to give a downtown gay history walking tour to delegates from all over the country.  The tour on October 22nd was well received by a particularly enthusiastic crowd.

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