William & Mary Mattachine Research Project Documents Virginia’s LGBTIQ Past


The William & Mary Mattachine LGBTIQ Research Project: Documenting the LGBTIQ Past in Virginia aims to better understand, chronicle and preserve the history of LGBTIQ people in Virginia.

Beginning with research at the Library of Virginia, the Virginia Historical Society, Virginia Commonwealth University, William & Mary, and other archives, student researchers:

  • engage communities
  • preserve knowledge and
  • discover histories related to LGBTIQ experiences in the state of Virginia

The launch of this research project was aided by the Mattachine Society of Washington, DC, one of the nation’s oldest gay rights organizations, and is part of a larger national effort to document the histories of LGBTIQ people and the policies and laws that have affected their lives. Student research, under faculty guidance, focuses on state laws and policies that affected and may still affect the lives of LGBTIQ people and communities in the Commonwealth.

Undergraduate and graduate student researchers gain valuable experience in archival research and may earn independent study credit. On the basis of their archival work, students produce papers, exhibits, present their research findings to the community, and contribute to a permanent and publicly accessible database. Students may also engage their research in other endeavors: research papers, honors theses or conference papers.

This project is funded in part by the LGBTIQ Research Fund in History that supports projects at William & Mary that seek to document the LGBTIQ past.

Contact the project:
W&M Mattachine LGBTIQ Research Project
P.O. Box 8795
College of William & Mary
Williamsburg, VA 23187-8795