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Michigan State University

LGBTQ History and Culture: Resources in Special Collections: LGBTQ communities


The MSU Libraries have an extensive scholarly collection on gender studies, including academic journals, books and ebooks, and conference proceedings. Within Special Collections, our focus is on collecting the voices of LGBTQ individuals and groups.

Bar Culture

A sampling of important titles:

Search for the subject heading Gay bars.

Bisexual Identity

Important early periodicals:

Search for subject headings: Bisexuals or Bisexuality.

Leather lifestyle

You can search leather lifestyle as a Library of Congress subject heading!

Also do a keyword search for gay and leather.

Drummer is the premier leather publication; MSU has issues from 1975 to 1998.

Box 3 of the Gay Magazine Collection (MSS 412) has several leather publications.

Earliest lesbian newsletters

The Ladder, the first lesbian periodical to circulate nationally. Published 1956-1970.

Lesbian Connection, a "free worldwide forum of news & ideas for, by and about lesbians" published here in Lansing since 1974.

LGBTQ People of Color

We have many newsletters and publications by and about LGBTQ people of color. Construct a keyword search, such as asian american and bisexuals:

african american





asian american gay men
hispanic american gays
indians of north america lesbians
minorities transgender people
color or colour transsexuals


The first known LGBTQ publication in the Lansing area is Sunflower, published in 1972.

Making contact

Bachelor. Philadelphia: The Bachelor Inc. MSU has issues from 1937.

Advocate Classifieds. Los Angeles: Liberation Publications. MSU has issues from the mid-1990s.

Unzipped. Los Angeles: SLI. Continues Advocate Classifieds. MSU has issues from 1997 to 2002.

Gay Truckers Classifieds. Houston: LeDucq. MSU has issues from 2004-2007.

Lesbian Connection. Lansing, MI: Ambitious Amazons. MSU has issues from 1974-present.

Drummer. San Francisco: Desmodus Inc. MSU has issues from 1975-1998.

Queer Zines

We have a growing collection of zines, a form of independent media.

Search for LGBTQ zines with a keyword search.

Tom of Finland

We have many examples of the work of "Tom of Finland" (Touko Laadsonen), a noted illustrator of homoerotica.

Transgender periodicals

Early transgender titles in our collection:

See the resource guide Transgender Voices in Special Collections for a more thorough exploration of our holdings.

Michigan State University