Hudson River Park welcomes all who have relied on the piers historically, and still today, as a safe space for gathering, connection and love. As we celebrate Pride — this month and beyond — we embrace and honor the LGBTQIA+ history of our waterfront and surrounding neighborhoods. We’re sharing resources where you can learn more about this history through art, written records, tours and other learning tools. While this list is by no means exhaustive, we hope it points to helpful sources for those who want to learn more.
NYC LGBT Historic Site Project
The NYC LGBT Historic Site Project documents historic places connected to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in NYC, telling the often untold story of their influence on American history and culture. The Project’s interactive map features over 385 sites, including the Park’s Greenwich Village Waterfront, and can be sorted by cultural significance, neighborhood, era, LGBT category and type of site.
The Center Archives
The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Center (“The Center”), located on W 13 St., maintains The LGBT Community Center National History Archive, a community-based archive that “collects, preserves, and makes available to the public the documentation of LGBTQ lives and organizations centered in and around New York.” With materials that date as early as 1878, this wealth of resources, enables “stories and experiences of New York’s LGBTQ people to be told with historical depth and understanding.”
NYPL Gay and Lesbian Collections & AIDS/HIV Collections
New York Public Library’s Manuscripts and Archives Division is home to over 100 collections pertaining to LGBT history and culture, and to the history of the AIDS/HIV epidemic, dating back to the 1890s. (A guide to the archive notes that, “Gay and lesbian history and AIDS history are not a single subject; however, because of their interrelationships, both types of collections are included.”)
Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP) Civil Rights & Social Justice Map
Launched by the GVSHP in 2017, this online resource marks more than 200 locations within Greenwich Village, NoHo and the East Village that are significant to the history of various civil rights and social justice movements. The interactive map, which includes a feature on the Park’s Pier 45, allows visitor to sort by movement and explore intersectional landmarks for community advocacy.
The Whitney Museum of American Art’s Queer History Walks
With dates throughout the summer, this free walking tour “explores the rich queer history of the neighborhood surrounding the Whitney Museum,” inviting visitors to “consider their connection to the changing landscape of the neighborhood that the Whitney now occupies, as well as to the history of the city.” We also encourage you to check out the Whitney’s Artists Among Us podcast, which uses Day’s End — © David Hammons (2014-2021), a gift from the Whitney to Hudson River Park — as a jumping off point to explore the history of the Meatpacking District, celebrating the communities that shaped the neighborhood.
National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) Greenwich Village LGBT History Tour
This map, put together by the NPCA and the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project, details sites of historic importance located both within and near the Stonewall National Monument. It features a 45-minute, 17-stop self-guided tour, which includes a visit to the Park. Visit the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project resource hub for more.
This month, as we honor our waterfront’s history, we celebrate the enduring role the Park plays as a safe space for community and self-expression. Within Hudson River Park, you can visit pieces of public art and monuments of importance to NYC’s LGBTQIA+ community. Throughout the summer, our line-up of free public events spotlights and celebrates LGBTQIA+ voices — learn more here.