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October 10, 2018 Unveiling of “The Crossroads”

the first LGBTQ historical marker in the state of Texas.

Despite Dallas’s reputation as one of the state’s more conservative cities, its LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) community was among the first in Texas to organize politically and socially. In 1947, the city became home to one of the first Gay bars in Texas, Club Reno, and in 1972 was the site of the first Gay Pride Parade in Texas. In 1980, the parade moved from downtown to Cedar Springs Road.

The area surrounding the intersection of Throckmorton Street and Cedar Springs Road has been considered the center of the Dallas LGBTQ community since the early 1970’s, and is known as “The Gay Crossroads” or “The Crossroads.” In the late 1960s and early 1970s The Crossroads was a magnet for the city’s counterculture movements. Gays and Lesbians began moving to the area, drawn to its Bohemian image and picturesque architecture. More gay-owned businesses and bars followed, and by the end of the 1970s, the majority of the businesses in the area catered to the LGBTQ community. With the onslaught of the Aids Crises in the 1980s, The Crossroads became not only and entertainment district, but also a center for political activism, social services, and medical testing.

As the historic heart of the LGBTQ community of Dallas, The Crossroads remains the location of the oldest gay businesses in the city and as the primary gathering point for LQBTQ political and social events, including the Alan Ross Freedom Parade. The Crossroads continues to serve the neighborhood and the city as a symbol of social, economic and political action among the LGBTQ community.

 
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Love Rules

Spontaneous public celebration gathering at the Legacy of Love Monument, on Oak Lawn Blvd. at Cedar Springs Road, Dallas, Texas, June 26, 2015

 
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One Night Only

Songs and Stories from the Turtle Creek Chorale

 
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Bill Nelson

Bill Nelson was a leading GLBT activist in the tumultuous 1980s ... an era of gay political awakening and the advent of the AIDS epidemic in Dallas. A former high school teacher, Bill and his partner, Terry Tebedo, along with friends William Waybourn and Craig Spaulding, opened a retail store at the corner of Cedar Springs Blvd. and Throckmorton in the Oak Lawn neighborhood of Dallas, the "Crossroads Market," which became the epicenter of the activist GLBT community of Dallas for many years to come.

 
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Gay Pride 2017 at Dallas City Hall

Throughout the month of July 2017, the Dallas City Hall main lobby hosted a collection of informative panels, photographs and historic artifacts pertaining to the GLBT community of Dallas. The event was a collaboration among The Dallas Way, the University of North Texas, and the Dallas GLBT Employees Organization.

 
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The Dallas Way at Work

The "Happy Historians" at work for the GLBT community.