Finding aid for the James E. Ritter Journals

Lisa Monhoff
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society
657 Mission Street, Suite 300
San Francisco, California 94105
Phone: (415) 777-5455
Fax: (415) 777-5576
Email: info@glbthistory.org
URL: http://www.glbthistory.org/
© 2006
The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society. All rights reserved.

Guide to the James E. Ritter Journals

Collection number: 1997-03

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society

San Francisco, California
Processed by:
Lisa Monhoff
Date Completed:
February 2006
Encoded by:
Rebekah Kim
© 2006 The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: James E. Ritter Journals
Dates: 1989-1994
Collection number: 1997-03
Creator: Ritter, James E.
Collection Size: 1 box 6 journals
Repository: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society
San Francisco, California 94105
Abstract: 6 Journals from January 1989 to November 1994. Daily entries capture the life of an HIV positive gay male living in Northern California.
Physical location: Stored at the Archives of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society in San Francisco, California.
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Access

Collection open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright to unpublished manuscript materials has been transferred to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], James E. Ritter Papers, 1997-03, The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.

Acquisition Information

Donated to the Library by Carrie Broeker on February 11, 1997.

Biography

James (Jim) Ritter was born in 1960 and was raised in Minnesota. He moved to Monterey in 1977 to attend to attend the Navy's Defense Language Institute where he studied Russian. After leaving the Navy he went on to work in the hotel industry in Monterey and also sold real estate part-time after earning his real estate license in 1989.
Ritter volunteered much of his time with the Monterey County AIDS Project (MCAP), after joining the group in 1987. He served on the MCAP board, attended weekly support group meetings, acted as an advocate for people with HIV and AIDS, interviewed potential volunteers, organized training sessions and events and helped with many other aspects of the organization. In the last years of his life Ritter developed and implemented the MCAP food drive, collecting food for people with AIDS. He was also very active in organizing local residents to attend the Gay Pride Parade each year in San Francisco. Ritter often spoke to high schools and other groups in the Monterey area about AIDS and safe-sex issues. Ritter died of AIDS related complications on June 18, 1995.

Scope and Content of Collection

These six bound journals depict the life of an HIV positive gay man copoing with the daily stresses of life, while also dealing with the burden of his diagnosis. The journals provide insight into every aspect of Ritter's life, from work to play to health and everything in between. The entries show that Ritter cherished friends, family, and personal relationships above everything else. Staying healthy was also extremely important to Ritter and he maintained an active physical lifestyle, enjoying running, swimming, scuba diving, biking, and skiing. Each journal contains a list of every AIDS-related death that struck Ritter's circle of friends in that year.
The collection consists of a single series: Journals. There are 6 red bound journals, one for each year from 1989 to 1994.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
AIDS
San Francisco (Calif.)
People With AIDS


Collection Contents

 

Journals 1989-1994

Physical Description: 6 journals

Series Description

This series includes contains 6 red bound journals of James E. Ritter. There is one journal for each year from 1989 to 1994.
Box: Folder 1: 1

1989

Box: Folder 1: 2

1990

Box: Folder 1: 3

1991

Box: Folder 1: 4

1992

Box: Folder 1: 5

1993

Box: Folder 1: 6

1994