Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding aid of the Lesbian Legacy Collection Subject Files
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (142.94 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Processing Information
  • Administrative History
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Lesbian Legacy Collection subject files
    Dates: ca. 1920-2008
    Bulk Dates: 1970-2007
    Collection number: Coll2009-004
    Creator: Retter, Yolanda, 1947-2007
    Collection Size: 24 archive boxes + 3 archive cartons + 1 flat archive box + 1 map case drawer. 28.5 linear feet.
    Repository: ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives.
    Los Angeles, California 90007
    Abstract: Photographs, clippings, catalogs, organizational records, flyers, pamphlets, correspondence, manuscripts, press material, slides, posters and other printed material make up the Lesbian Legacy Collection Subject Files, begun in 1996 by lesbian feminist activist and librarian, Yolanda Retter, at the ONE Institute / International Gay & Lesbian Archives (now the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives.) The collection consists of over a thousand files related to lesbian history and the women's rights movement.
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English


    The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

    Publication Rights

    Researchers wishing to publish materials must obtain permission in writing from ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives as the physical owner. Researchers must also obtain clearance from the holder(s) of any copyrights in the materials. Note that ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives can grant copyright clearance only for those materials for which we hold the copyright. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain copyright clearance for all other materials directly from the copyright holder(s).

    Preferred Citation

    Lesbian Legacy Collection subject files, Coll2009-004, ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives, Los Angeles, California.

    Acquisition Information

    A substantial portion of the collection was acquired by International Gay & Lesbian Archives founder, James Kepner. The rest of the materials were collected by Yolanda Retter and volunteers of the Lesbian Legacy Collection. For most of the materials, donors and dates of acquisition are unknown.

    Processing Information

    Collection processed by Loni Shibuyama, March 27, 2009. Processing this collection has been funded in part by Jeanne Córdova.

    Administrative History

    In 1996, the ONE Institute / International Gay & Lesbian Archives (now the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives) introduced three female members to its board of directors: Jeanne Córdova, Ivy Bottini and Karen Quimby. Along with other lesbian women on the ONE board, Córdova, Bottini and Quimby spearheaded a campaign to increase lesbian visibility at ONE and to develop a special collection within the archives, known as the Lesbian Legacy Collection. Karen Quimby served as its first director.
    The Lesbian Legacy Collection (LLC) developed under the supervision of lesbian feminist, activist and librarian, Yolanda Retter. Through a grant from the California Community Foundation and additional funds from ONE, Retter was hired as LLC's full-time librarian, and the LLC opened its doors to the public in 1997. Among Retter's projects and activities was curating gay and lesbian exhibits; creating and maintaining a website on lesbian history; providing resources for researchers and scholars; and collecting, organizing and preserving the LLC subject files, a substantial portion of which was acquired by James Kepner, founder of the International Gay & Lesbian Archives. In 2006, the Lesbian Legacy Collection ended its operations.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Lesbian Legacy Collection Subject Files comprises clippings, catalogs, organizational records, flyers, pamphlets, correspondence, manuscripts, press material, slides, photographs, posters, textiles, calendars and other printed material that document organizations, events and individuals significant to the feminist and lesbian rights movement. The collection is divided into two series: (1) Subject Files and (2) Photographs, Posters and Textiles. The Subject Files are arranged alphabetically, and approximate dates range from the 1950s to 2000s. The Photographs, Posters and Textiles Series includes posters from events and organizations, a single cloth armband, and photographs, some of which date as early as the 1920s.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Gay and lesbian rights
    Gay liberation movement--United States
    Lesbian activists
    Lesbian artists
    Lesbian authors
    Lesbian feminism
    Lesbian Legacy Collection
    Lesbian youth
    Lesbians--Civil rights
    Lesbians--Services for
    Retter, Yolanda, 1947-2007