America's Only LGBTQ Historic District Is Falling Apart
One of North America’s first openly lesbian poets launched her career by pissing off H.P. Lovecraft.
In 1918, at the age of 19, Elsa Gidlow started publishing North America’s first known LGBTQ-themed magazine out of her home in Montreal. Combining queer poetry, one-act plays about young gay love, and progressive social commentary, Les mouches fantastiques quickly gained a cult following far beyond the city and even Canada—culminating in a back-and-forth literary journal spat with the noted horror writer (and racist), who decried the magazine’s promotion of an “ancient selfish hedonism.”
In 1920, Gidlow moved...