Scope and Content
Title: Pat Bond Papers,
Date (inclusive): 1910-1994 [bulk dates 1979-1985]
Accession number: 92-5
Extent: 3.5 linear feet
The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.
San Francisco, California.
The Papers (#92-5) were donated to GLHS in 1992.
Collection is open for research.
The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society holds copyright to unpublished photographic image
The Papers contain photographs, audio cassette tapes, and VHS cassette tapes.
[Identification of item], Pat Bond Papers, 92-5, The Gay and Lesbian Historical Society
of Northern California.
Patricia Childers was born on February 7, 1925 in Chicago. She grew up in Davenport, Iowa. In 1945 she joined the Women's
Army Corps with the hope of meeting other lesbians. In the army, she cared for wounded soldiers returning from the South Pacific
and later served in occupied Japan. In 1947, in Tokyo, 500 women were dishonorably discharged from the army on the charge
of homosexuality. Pat escaped this "witch hunt," in which many lesbians testified against each other in trial, because before
going to Japan she had married a gay man, Paul Bond, in San Francisco. With her marriage license Pat Bond was able to get
an honorable discharge from the army on July 3, 1947, and she moved to San Francisco. She studied theater at San Francisco
State College, earning a B.A. and an M.A., and for the next several decades she acted in various small theater groups, did
some bartending, and for a short time owned her own bar.
In the late 1970s, she started to write a book about Gertrude Stein, but was overwhelmed with the project until her friend
Nancy Adair suggested she transform the book into a performance piece. In 1978, Pat was interviewed for the documentary
Word is Out, directed by Peter Adair. Pat's performance in this film, in which she speaks humorously and poignantly about her experiences
in the army, stole the show, and her career as an actress and comedienne was launched. In the 1970s and 1980s she performed
four one woman shows in small theaters and at colleges and universities across the country:
Gerty, Gerty, Gerty Stein is Back, Back, Back;
Conversations with Pat Bond;
Murder in the WAC; and
Lorena Hickok and Eleanor Roosevelt: A Love Story.
Gerty was shown repeatedly on national public television. Pat also played the part of Nurse Maxine in the movie
The House of God (1980). In the 1980s she served on the board of directors of Theater Rhinoceros in San Francisco and directed several plays
there. During the 1980s an oral history was done by historian Allan Bérubé for the book
Coming Out Under Fire. She was also taped for the documentary film based on the book but didn't appear in the movie, because she had become too sickly
by that time.
In 1990 she was honored by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors for her service during World War II. She died in Marin County,
California on December 24, 1990. In Pat's memory, her friends established the Pat Bond Memorial Old Dyke Award to honor lesbians
over the age of sixty. Pat's papers and photograph albums were collected by her close friends and donated to GLHS.
Scope and Content
The collection (3.5 linear feet) consists of the background research, notes, early drafts, and manuscripts for Pat's four
one woman shows. Also included are Pat's correspondence, her poetry, writing practice, character sketches, stories, incomplete
manuscripts, as well as reviews and awards for her shows. Finally, the collection includes Pat's diaries from 1966 through
1987. Some of the diaries are journals with substantial entries; however, most of the diaries are date books in which Pat
kept a record of her daily life, including comments about the weather and doctors' appointments as well as notes about friends
Boxes 1 and 2 contain the manuscripts of Pat's productions, arranged in chronological order. While The
Only Gay Bar in Town and Pat's Autobiography were never produced or published, they are included in Box 2 because they are substantial works. Box
3 contains miscellaneous documents and manuscripts. All of the legal sized documents from all series are included in Box 4.
Pat Bond's photographic collection consists of her head shots and performance pictures (8" x 10", black and white, positive
and negative images) as well as six photo albums comprised of her personal snapshots (different sizes but mostly 3 1/2" x
5"; color and black and white). The personal pictures show: Pat's grandmother and mother in the 1910s and 1920s; Pat as a
child in the 1920s and 1930s; Pat as a young woman in the 1940s; Pat with friends (gay male friends and women friends) in
Marin County and at the Russian River in the 1950s and 1960s. The majority of the pictures are from the early 1980s and show
Pat and her friends, dogs, and cats at her home in Marin County. The photographs do not seem to have been placed in any particular
order in the albums, but the order of the albums has been maintained.
The collection also consists of video and audio of Pat Bond's performances, and some of the costumes she wore during her shows.
Title: Phyllis Abry Kaplan Papers,
Identifier/Call Number: 95-8
Title: World War Two (WW II) Project - Records,
Identifier/Call Number: 95-16
Title: Valencia Rose - Records,
Identifier/Call Number: 93-7