The President Announces America’s First National Monument Dedicated To LGBT Rights

A bar full of gay men once bravely fought a group of cops. Obama just immortalized them

Today, President Barack Obama announced he’s designating the Stonewall National Monument in New York City as the newest addition to America’s National Park System. “Stonewall will be our first national monument to tell the story of the struggle for LGBT rights,” he said in an announcement. The monument is a tribute to those who stood up to anti-gay police harassment at a Greenwich Village gay bar in 1969. Historically, the protest is seen as the spark that ignited the gay rights movement in the U.S. The monument includes the Stonewall Inn, as well the adjacent Christopher Park and surrounding streets and sidewalks that played a part in the uprising.

The Stonewall uprising began in June 1969 when the Stonewall Inn was raided by police at three am for serving liquor without a license. As Stonewall’s employees were arrested and thrown into paddy wagons alongside a lesbian and three transgendered people, the bar patrons protested by throwing bottles which led to a riot. The uprising would inspire demonstrations in front of the Stonewall Inn and became the impetus for the creation of the Gay Liberation Front as well as other LGBT rights organizations.

Learn more about the Stonewall Uprising