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LGBT+ History Month 2021: A Preview of Coming Attractions

A big part of our Islington’s Pride project is our Heritage Trail – an interactive map of the borough that collects the people, places and organisations – past and present – that have made Islington their home.

On this trail we will have 150 pins, each pin with its own personal history. “This is the former home of Peter Wildeblood…”, “… the address of pioneering transgender lawyer…”, “…site of the famous and sadly missed pub…”, “…where the organisation still operates today…”. Each entry contains its own unique history and memory. Many will contain images and archive references, and lots will contain snippets of the oral histories we’ve been collecting in 2020 (when we figured out how to do them safely!)

We want to share with you just some of our heritage as part of LGBT+ History Month this February. And throughout March we’ll be having a look back at ten years of LGBTQ+ exhibitions at the Islington Museum. We look forward to presenting our next, in person exhibit when it’s safe to do so and getting to experience our Heritage Map when we finally can. In the meantime: stay safe, mind yourself and we’ll see you online!

Digital Heritage Map Preview

Throughout the Islington’s Pride project, we have found 150 points of interest throughout the borough. This includes: current and former residents, venues such as LGBTQ+ bars, community organisations and locations of celebration and infamy.

In order to bring this incredible amount of queer history to the people of the borough, we have worked with Error, a digital humanities organisation and the team behind such heritage works as Layers of London. In this preview, we show you how we created the entries, incorporated images and oral histories, and demonstrate how our physical plaques across the borough will connect you to the rich history we celebrate today.

A Virtual Journey into the Islington’s Pride Archive

A major part of the Islington’s Pride project has been the creation of our Archive: collating and collecting items and ephemera that focus on the London Borough of Islington’s LGBTQ+ heritage. Islington has been highly influential in the growth of the LGBTQ+ community, its organisations and rights through the 20th and into the 21st Century.

Archivist Marlin Khondoker presents just some of the highlights in the archive, detailing the rich history and why it’s so important to preserve our at-risk histories. While we wish you could join us in person, this really is the next best thing! Don’t miss it.

Collecting Oral Histories (in a Pandemic)

Oral Histories are incredible, personal testimonies that preserve intangible history while connecting us to our heritage in the most intimate ways. Usually they are done face-to-face in an intimate setting.

After just hiring our oral historian we were forced to adapt. We discuss how we collected and are still collecting oral histories, the urgent importance of people’s stories, and how we think future listeners will consider this time.

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