Famous Same-Sex Couples
© January 9, 2014, Demian


It is a popular myth that same-sex relationships don’t last. Our Partners National Survey of Gay & Lesbian Couples gives us data to the contrary. This list of well known couples — some from ancient times, others more recent — suggests the reality of committed couples, and the roles that partners plays in each other’s lives and, in some cases, each other’s work.

The data for our list comes primarily from books, and from reputable Web sites. We are often sent suggestions, however, do not post a couple until we have published verification.

We do not include in our list, for instance, such couples as Emily Dickinson and Sue Gilbert. While they had a deep love for each other, there has not been enough evidence that they considered themselves actually partnered — even though these women did dream of establishing a quiet life together in a little house somewhere, and they did not do so because of finances and social obligations.

Gathering information about same-sex families is sometimes very difficult. Because of the fact that homosexuality has, at various times in history, been attacked or forbidden, historians and their publishers have often refused to acknowledge that famous people had same-sex partners. Most history books for k-12 students routinely delete any mention of homosexuality, never mind offering reference to same-sex families.

Then there are the relatives who, embarrassed by their famous kin’s same-sex life partners or lovers, choose to hide or burn the love letters that would allow the world to see their relative’s true orientation, as was the case with Emily Dickinson.

Because of this kind of omission, many listeners of Benjamin Britten, for instance, have no idea that he was gay and that his orientation informed so much of his work. In fact, he wrote much of his music to be sung by Peter Pears, his partner of 40 years. Britten’s work continues, to this day, to influence the face of music.

“The biographical head notes in every sophomore [literature] anthology suggest the importance Petrarch’s love for Laura, of Dante’s love for Beatrice, of Wordsworth’s love for Annette, but never are we told [in textbooks] that Oscar’s love for Bosie informs some of his prose … ; that Whitman’s love for Peter Doyle influenced his prophetic theory of comradeship; that A.E. Housman’s unrequited love for A.J. Jackson contributed to the bitter but restrained sorrow of much of his poetry …; or that Edna St. Vincent Millay’s frequent references to Sappho or Lesbos are not prompted by her love for Eugene, or that Tennyson’s love for Arthur Hugh Hallam prompted him to write that most ‘universal’ of sentiments: ‘Tis better to have loved and lost / Than never to have loved at all.’”
- Rictor Norton in “Ganymede Raped: Gay Literature — The Critic as Censor,”
Gay Sunshine Journal #23, Nov. 1974
Few think twice when an historian figure is assumed to be heterosexual, though there may be no factual grounds whatsoever for this assumption.

Historically, couples themselves have often been silent about the nature of their relationship because they consider it private. And in some cases they kept silent because they knew that they could be ostracized, lose jobs or elections — or be imprisoned or murdered — often at the insistence of those institutions devoted to loving one’s neighbor: religion.

Here, then, are those same-sex couples for which there is ample evidence of their love and commitment to each other. Couples who created families, often based not on legal bonds, but on companionship and mutual love. Here are same-sex couples who just happen to be famous.

Famous Historical Couples Years Together
Mazo de la Roche (author)
Caroline Clement (?)
They were cousins who met when Mazo was seven. From that time on, these two lived together until Mazo’s death in 1961. Mazo adapted her novel “Whiteoaks of Jalna” into play form, which ran in London for 827 performances and on Broadway for 14 weeks with Ethel Barrymore. In the play, eighteen-year-old Fitch is a talented pianist who is disgusted by his homoerotic feelings. Contrary to many plays and films on homosexuality, before and since, Fitch is not punished for being gay, and further is rewarded as he becomes the sole beneficiary of his grandmother’s estate.
75
Robert Wright (composer, lyricist)
George Forrest (b. George Forrest Chichester, Jr. - aka Chet Forrest) (composer, lyricist)
For more than 70 years, Robert and George were life partners as well as collaborators writing music and lyrics for film, stage, and club acts. They are best known for the 1953 Broadway musical and 1955 musical film “Kismet”, for which they had adapted musical themes by Alexander Borodin. They also did the music for films: “After the Thin Man” (1936), Boystown (1938), “Marie Antoinette” (1938), “Our Gang Follies” (1938), “The Women” (1939), “I Married an Angel” (1941), “Song of Norway” (1970). They wrote the hit song “The Donkey Serenade” () along with composer Herbert Stothart (based on a musical theme by Rudolf Friml from his show “The Firefly.” They worked together on 60 films, 18 stage productions, and 13 TV specials.
70+
Bruhs Mero (dancer, modern dance teacher, lyricist)
Gean Harwood (pianist, composer, author)
Bruhs Mero and Gean Harwood met in New York in 1929, and remained together until Bruh’s death in 1995. They co-wrote about sixty songs. Gean authored their story in a book titled, “The Oldest Gay Couple in America.” A musical about their life together was written by Tom Wilson Weinberg in 2003, called “Sharing a Dance: Sixty Years with Bruhs & Gean”, later produced as “Bruhs and Gean.”
66
Edith Hamilton (educator, author, historian)
Doris Fielding Reid (investment banker, author)
Edith wrote “The Greek Way” (1930). It was such a perennial best-seller that it was a Book-of-the-Month Club selection in 1957. She also wrote “The Roman Way” (1932), “The Prophets of Israel” (1936), “Three Greek Plays” (1937), “Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes” (1942), “The Golden Age of Greek Literature” (1943), “Spokesmen for God” (1949), “Witness to the Truth: Christ and His Interpreters” (1949), “Echo of Greece” (1957). Doris wrote “Edith Hamilton: An Intimate Portrait”
60
Del Martin (author, editor, activist)
Phyllis Lyon (author, editor, activist)
Del and Phyllis met in 1950, became lovers in 1952, living together since Valentines Day 1953 in an apartment on Castro Street in San Francisco. They founded the Daughters of Bilitis (DOB)in 1955, likely the first social and political organization for lesbians in the United States. They both acted as president and editor of organization’s publication, “The Ladder,” until 1963. They remained involved in DOB until joining the National Organization for Women as the first openly lesbian couple to do so. They helped form the Council of Religion and Homosexuality in northern California to persuade ministers to accept homosexuals into churches, and used their influence to decriminalize homosexuality in the 1960-70s. They became politically active in San Francisco’s first gay political organization, the Alice B. Toklas Democratic Club, and influenced mayor Dianne Feinstein to sponsor a citywide bill to outlaw employment discrimination based on orientation. Both served in the White House Conference on Aging in 1995. On February 12, 2004, Martin and Lyon were issued a marriage license by the City and County of San Francisco after mayor Gavin Newsom ordered marriage licenses be given to same-sex couples who requested them. The license, along with those of several thousand other same-sex couples, were voided by the California supreme court on August 12, 2004. However, on June 16, 2008, Del and Phyllis were able to legally marry when the California State Supreme Court found that the state must comply with its own constitution and allow all citizens the right to marry. Del wrote “Battered Wives” (1979), and together they authored “Lesbian/Woman” (1972), and “Lesbian Love and Liberation” (1973) Del died on August 27, 2008, at 87 years of age.
55
Romaine Brooks (painter)
Natalie Barney (heiress)
55
George Nader (actor, author)
Mark Miller (secretary)
George retired from acting in 1974, and published “Chrome,” a sci-fi novel that featured a gay love story between a man and a robot, in 1978. With Miller, he also wrote the forthcoming “The Perils of Paul,” a novel about the gay community in Hollywood. George died at 80 in February 2002. Mark served as George’s secretary for 35 years, and then as Rock Hudson’s secretary for 16 years.
55
Gore Vidal (statesman, author, actor)
Howard Austen (?)
Gore Vidal quote 1: “Look, homophobia is fed into every child in the United States at birth. It is unrelenting, it never lets up. They asked a whole raft of high school boys across the country a couple years ago, one of those polls about what they would most like to be in life, and what they would hate to be, and so forth, and what they would most hate to be was homosexual. There wasn’t anyone, not one, who just skipped the question. They all said ‘oh no, that’s the worst thing you could be.’ ”
Gore Vidal quote 2: “There are no homosexual people, only homosexual acts.”

Vore wrote “The City and the Pillar,” and “Myra Breckinridge.”
53
1949-2003 ended with Howard’s death
Lady Eleanor Butler
Sarah Ponsonby (?)
Known as the “Ladies of Llangeollen” (the small Welsh hamlet where they lived) in the General Evening Post, 1790.
53
Mary Woolley (author, Mt. Holyoke College president)
Jeannette Marks (?)
Wooley was the only female member of the 1932 Geneva Arms Conference.
52
Don Slater (writer, journalist, activist)
Antonio “Tony” Reyes (aka Sanchez) (?)
Don was a leading pioneer in the gay liberation movement in the United States. He was instrumental in the founding of many homophile organizations including ONE Inc., ONE Institute of Homophile Studies, the Institute for the Study of Human Resources, and the Homosexual Information Center. In 1953, he co-founded “ONE Magazine,” and was later the magazine’s editor. It was likely the first, national, openly gay publication in the U.S. The FBI and postal officials confiscated the October 1954 issues, charging that ONE could not be sent through the U.S. mail because it contained “obscene” material. The FBI cited one article on lesbians, and another on gay marriage, presuming they were obscene because the articles were “lustfully stimulating to the average homosexual reader.” After losing in lower courts, Don and other staff members took the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, and on January 13, 1958, a landmark decision established that the subject of homosexuality was not, per se, obscene. From then on, gay publications could legally be distributed through the mail. In the 60s, Don split with “ONE Magazine” and published and edited “Tangents.” In 1966, Don helped launch the National Conference of Homophile Organizations and the Western Regional Conferences. He worked to reverse the anti-gay bias of the American Civil Liberties Union. On Armed Forces Day, May 21, 1966, he led a motorcade in Los Angeles protesting exclusion of gay people from the armed forces. He picketed the “L.A. Times” in 1969 when they refused ads for a play with gay content called “Geese,” and organized after-show discussions with the audience. He encouraged politicians to seek the gay vote, and picketed a meeting of ONE that supported a homophobic councilman. He hosted the first Gay Liberation Front meetings in L.A.
51
Charles Nolte (actor, teacher)
Terry Kilburn (aka Terence Kilburn or Terrance Kilburn) (actor)
Charles made his Broadway debut in a production of Antony and Cleopatra, starring Katharine Cornell and featuring Charlton Heston, Maureen Stapleton and Tony Randall. Playing the title in the 1951 production of Billy Budd garnered Charles critical attention and acclaim. He also appeared in such films as “War Paint,” “The Steel Cage,” “Ten Seconds to Hell,” and “Under Ten Flags.” Charles earned a doctorate in 1966, and taught at the University of Minnesota from the mid-1960s to late 90s. He wrote the play “Do Not Pass Go,” which was produced off-Broadway, and wrote the libretti for two operas by Dominick Argento, “The Voyage of Edgar Allan Poe,” and “Valentino.” Charles died on January 14, 2010. Terry Kilburn achieved fame portraying Tiny Tim in “A Christmas Carol” (1938) and as four generations of the Colley family in “Goodbye, Mr. Chips” (1939). He appeared in “The Keys of the Kingdom” (1944), a film starring Gregory Peck. He was also featured in “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” with Basil Rathbone (1939). Terry ran the Meadow Brook Theater, Michigan, for many years. Charles and Terry met in the 50s in a stage door alley, when Charles was playing in “The Caine Mutiny Court Martial” and Terry was next door in “The Teahouse of the August Moon.”
50+
Maurice Bernard Sendak (author, illustrator)
Dr. Eugene Glynn (psychoanalyst)
Maurice wrote more than 100 books, and has received the Caldecott Medal (1964), Hans Christian Andersen Award (1970), National Book Award (1982), Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal (1983), National Medal of Arts (1996), and the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (2003). Among his best known works are “Where the Wild Things Are” (1963), “In the Night Kitchen” (1970), and “Outside Over There” (1981). “In the Night Kitchen” has often been subjected to censorship for its drawings of a young boy prancing naked through the story. The book was challenged in Illinois, New Jersey, Minnesota, and Texas. It has regularly appeared on the American Library Association’s list of “frequently challenged and banned books,” and was listed number 21 on the “100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990–1999.” Maurice has produced costumes and sets for theater productions, as well as animation and television stories. Maurice died on May 8, 2012. The New York Times obituary (May 9, 2012) begins: “Maurice Sendak, widely considered the most important children’s book artist of the 20th century, who wrenched the picture book out of the safe, sanitized world of the nursery and plunged it into the dark, terrifying and hauntingly beautiful recesses of the human psyche, died on Tuesday in Danbury, Conn.” Maurice and Eugene were together until Eugene’s death in 2007.
50
J.C. Leyendecker (illustrator)
Charles Beach (artists model)
J.C.’s work appeared in the Saturday Evening Post, Collier’s, etc. Charles was the “Arrow Collar Man,” as well as J.C.’s manager and assistant.
50
Mary “Molly” Dewson (known as “Americas first female political boss”)
Polly Porter (?)
50
Octave Thanet (?)
Jane Crawford (?)
50
Mary Renault (author)
Julie Mullard (?)
50
William Haines (20s-30s movie actor, interior decorator)
Jimmie Shields (house husband)
Referred to by their friend Joan Crawford as “The happiest married couple in Hollywood.”
50
George Edward Kelly (playwright)
William Weagly (?)
George was a vaudevillian actor and skit writer. His best-known plays, penetrating satires on American middle-class life, include: “The Torch-Bearers” (1922), “The Deep Mrs. Sykes” (1945) and “The Show-off” (1924), which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. “Craig’s Wife,” (1925) earned him the Pulitzer in 1926, and was adapted to the screen three times. His brother, Walter C. Kelly, was also a vaudeville actor. George was uncle to the actress, and later princess of Monaco, Grace Kelly. She made her acting debut in “The Torch-Bearers.”
49
Maud Hunt Squire [aka Miss Skeene] (artist)
Ethel Mars [aka Miss Furr] (artist)
They met while art school students, sometime before 1906, which is when they settled together in Paris. Gertrude Stein immortalized Squire and Mars in her early word portrait, “Miss Furr and Miss Skeene” (1908-11).
48+
John Milton Cage Jr. (composer, philosopher, poet, music theorist, artist, amateur mycologist)
Merce Cunningham (choreographer, dancer)
John was one of the leading figures of the post-war avant-garde, and has been lauded as one of the most influential American composers of the 20th century.
Merce presented his first New York solo concert in April 1944 with composer John Cage, who became his romantic partner and frequent collaborator. The Merce Cunningham Dance Company was formed in the summer of 1953, for which Merce choreographed nearly 200 works. His work has been presented by dozens of companies worldwide.
48
Ended with John’s death in 1992
Axel Axgil (gay activist)
Eigil Axgil (gay activist)
World’s first “Registered Partnership” couple. [See Committed Couples Gallery III.]
46
Jane Rule (author, critic, teacher)
Helen Sonhoff (teacher)
45
Ismail Merchant (film producer, chef and author)
James Ivory (film director)
Ismail and James maintained a personal and business partnership. They met in 1959, and formed Merchant Ivory Productions in May 1961. For the next 44 years, Merchant Ivory Productions produced at least 45 films. Their films included: “The Bostonians” (1984), “A Room with a View” (1986), “Maurice” (1987), and “Howards End” (1992). Their relationship lasted until Ismail’s death on May 25, 2005.
44
Farley Earle Granger (actor, author)
Robert Calhoun (producer, author)
Farley’s best-known film works are in Hitchcock’s “Rope” (1948) and “Strangers on a Train” (1951), and Nicholas Ray’s “They Live by Night” (1948). On Broadway, Farley performed in “The Seagull,” “The Crucible,” “The Glass Menagerie,” and “Deathtrap.” He starred opposite Barbara Cook in a revival of “The King and I.” He won an Obie Award (1986) for his performance in Lanford Wilson’s “Talley & Son.”
Farley had intimate relations with many, including Ava Gardner, Leonard Bernstein, and Arthur Laurents. Farley and Robert’s relationship began on November 22, 1963. They collaborated on Farely’s biography “Include Me Out: My life from Goldwyn to Broadway.” In his memoir, Farley wrote that he had his first sexual experiences while in the military. He had sex at a private club, on the same night, with a hostess and an enlisted officer. He observes, “I finally came to the conclusion that for me, everything I had done that night was as natural and as good as it felt … I never have felt the need to belong to any exclusive, self-defining, or special group … I was never ashamed, and I never felt the need to explain or apologize for my relationships to anyone … I have loved men. I have loved women.”
44
ended on May 24, 2008
upon Robert’s death
J. Edgar Hoover (FBI chief, transvestite)
Clyde Tolson (FBI special agent)
44
Edward Perry Warren (art connoisseur)
John Marshall (archaeologist)
Edward strove to create an informal “brotherhood of men” in his home devoted to the Hellenic ideal. His Greek antique collections form the core collections at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art. Warren commissioned Rodin’s “The Kiss.”
44
Jack Edward Larson (actor, librettist, playwrite, screenwriter, producer)
James Bridges (screenwriter, director)
Jack played Jimmie Olson on the 1950s “Superman” TV series. He wrote the libretto to the opera “Lord Byron” (music by Virgil Thomson). He also wrote verse to music by Daron Hagen, Ned Rorem, and Aaron Copland.
James wrote and directed “Urban Cowboy” 1980, “The China Syndrome” 1979, “The Paper Chase” 1973, and “The Baby Maker” 1970.
Previous to his relationship to James, Jack had a relationship with Montgomery Clift.
43
Sir John Gielgud (actor)
Martin Hensler (?)
40
Benjamin Britten (composer)
Peter Pears (singer)
40
Barbara Grier (publisher, activist, archivist and lesbian-feminist hellraiser)
Donna McBride (publisher, archivist)
When Barbara was 12, in 1945, she went to the local, Detroit library librarian’s desk and asked for “Books about homosexuals, please.” After researching, she went home and told her mother she was a homosexual. “Because Mother and I were always open [with each other], I told her immediately. Mother said, since I was a woman, I wasn’t a homosexual, I was a lesbian. She also said that since I was 12, I was a little young to make this decision, and we should wait six months to tell the newspapers.” - quotes from Victoria Brownworth’s interview, November 11, 2011
Barbara and Donna met in 1972. In 1973, Barbara and Donna, along with author Anyda Marchant (who wrote lesbian fiction under “Sarah Aldridge”) and Anyda’s partner Muriel Crawford, formed Naiad Books (later Naiad Press)
In 2002, Barbara and Donna received Lambda Literary Foundation’s “Pioneer Award” for their work in lesbian publishing.
Barbara Grier died November 10, 2011, in Tallahassee, Florida, where she had lived for 40 years with Donna.
40
Marguerite Yourcenar [born Marguerite de Crayencour] (author)
Grace Frick (academic)
Yourcenar wrote “Alexis,” “Memories of Hadrian,” “The Abyss,” and an influential essay on Yokio Mishima. She became the first and only woman to be admitted to the Académie Fançaise in 1980.
40
Rosa Bonheur (painter)
Natalie Micas (?)
40
Willa Cather (author)
Edith Lewis (?)
40
H.D. [Hilda Doolittle] (poet)
Bryher (writer)
40+
Gertrude Stein (poet, author)
Alice B. Toklas (author)
39
Edward Carpenter (reformer, author, England’s first gay activist)
George Merrill (?)
39
Harry Hay (author, activist)
John Burnside (activist)
Harry formed the Mattachine Society in 1949, and was co-founder of the Radical Faeries in 1979.
39
Ended with Harry’s
death in 2002.
Timothy Findley (author, playwright)
Bill Whitehead (?)
Bill often cheerfully referred to himself as Timothy’s “keeper.” Timothy credited Bill with all that was good in his life.
39+
Janet Flanner (journalist)
Natalia Danesi Murray (writer, editor, radio commentator)
38
Janet’s 2nd relationship
Raymond Burr (actor, philanthropist)
Robert Benevides (Burr’s business partner, philanthropist)
35
Relationship ended when
Raymond died in 1993
Paul Cadmus (painter)
Jon Andersson (singer, actor)
35
W.H. Auden (poet)
Chester Kallman (poet)
34
Lou Silver Harrison (composer)
William Colvig (electrician, amateur musician, instrument designer)
Lou’s work “Music for Bill and Me” celebrated his life with William. Lou also wrote a puppet opera in 1971 called “Young Caesar,” which chronicled a same-sex love affair of Julius Caesar with and King Nicomedes of Bithynia. He called his work “the only opera with an overtly presented gay subject from history.” In the last years of his life, he worked to expand the opera. For many years, Lou was involved in the gay rights movement, and also worked on behalf of the ecological and world peace movements.
33
Ended with William’s death in 2000. Lou died on February 1, 2003, at which time he was survived by Todd Burlingame.
Christopher Isherwood (author)
Don Bachardy (painter)
32
Charlotte Witton (1st woman mayor of a major Canadian city, Ottawa)
Margaret Grier (?)
Witton is credit with creating the slogan:
“Whatever women do they must do twice as well as men to be thought of half so good … luckily, it’s not difficult.”
32
Ned Rorem (composer, author)
James Holmes (organist, choirmaster)
Rorem: “I can’t imagine life without Jim. He is my dearest friend, the only person I consult about anything. He is smarter than me, and I rely utterly on him.” (The Advocate, February 14, 1989)
32
Ended with James’ death in 1999
Maria Louise Pool (author)
Caroline M. Branson (?)
While Branson is listed as “literary companion” in Pool’s obituary, the two are buried together, with a double headstone, in the Rockland, Massachusetts Mt. Pleasant Cemetery.
32
Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti (sculptor, painter, architect, poet)
Tommaso dei Cavalieri (nobleman)
Tommaso was the model for Michelangelo’s “Victory” statue and for Christ in the “Last Judgment.” Michelangelo dedicated to him more than 300 sonnets and madrigals. Tommaso was 23 when he met Michelangelo in 1532, at the age of 57. In their first exchange of letters, on January 1, 1533, Michelangelo declared:
“Your lordship, only worldly light in this age of ours, you can never be pleased with another man’s work for there is no man who resembles you, nor one to equal you… It grieves me greatly that I cannot recapture my past, so as to longer be at your service. As it is, I can only offer you my future, which is short, for I am too old… That is all I have to say. Read my heart for ‘the quill cannot express good will.’ ”
Cavalieri replied:
“I swear to return your love. Never have I loved a man more than I love you, never have I wished for a friendship more than I wish for yours.”
Cavalieri remained devoted until Michelangelo’s death, holding his hand as he drew his last breath.
32
Leonardo da Vinci (artist, inventor)
Giacomo Caprotti (Leonardo’s apprentice)
about 30
Truman Capote (author, playwright)
Jack Dunphy (author, playwright, dancer)
Truman (1924-1984) was an American writer whose stories, novels, plays, and non-fiction are recognized literary classics, including “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” (1958) and “In Cold Blood” (1965). At least 20 films and TV dramas have been produced from his novels, stories and screenplays. Truman was openly gay in an era when it was rarely talked about. Jack (1915–1992) danced as one of the cowboys in the original Broadway production of “Oklahoma!” Truman and Jack shared a non-exclusive relationship. Their partnership became nonsexual, living apart during much of the 70s, and ended with Truman’s death in 1984. Their ashes were scattered at Crooked Pond, on Long Island, close to where they maintained a property with individual houses for many years.
about 30
John Schlesinger (filmmaker)
Michael Childers (photographer)
John directed “Midnight Cowboy,” “Daring,” “Sunday Bloody Sunday,” “Marathon Man,” and “The Falcon and the Snowman.” John died, at 77, in July 2003.
30
Samuel Osborne Barber II (composer, singer)
Gian Carlo Menotti (composer, librettist)
Gian Carlo wrote “Amahl and the Night Visitors,” and won Pulitzer prizes for his operas “The Consul” (1950), and “The Saint of Bleeker Street” (1954). Samuel’s work included the “Adagio for Strings” which later was used in films such as “Platoon,” “The Elephant Man,” “El Norte,” and “Lorenzo’s Oil.” He won a Pulitzer prize in 1963 for his “Concerto for Piano and Orchestra.” Samuel was also influential in the successful campaign against ASCAP, winning composer an increase of their share of royalties. The couple separated in 1973, however, in a 1985 interview Gian Carlo stated that, when he died, he wished to be buried beside Samuel where there was a plot waiting for him. Barber, who died in 1981, left instructions that, if Gian Carlo was buried elsewhere, a marker should be put on the empty plot reading: “To the memory of two friends.”
30
Jack Larson (actor, producer)
Jim Bridges (director)
Jack played Jimmy Olsen in the original TV series “Superman.” A CD entitled “More Than a Day” with music by Ned Rorem, featured some of the poems Jack wrote to Jim. Jim died in 1993.
30
Anna Cogswell Wood (?)
Irene Leache (?)
30
Dame Ivy Compton-Burnett
Margaret Jourdain (?)
30
Sarah Orne Jewett (novelist, feminist)
Annie Adams Fields (philanthropist, biographer)
30
Radclyffe Hall (author)
Lady Una Troubridge (?)
30
Noël Peirce Coward (playwright, songwriter, actor, director, author)
Graham Payn (actor)
Noël wrote songs and lead roles for Graham in Noël’s reviews. They co-stared in Noël’s “Astonished Heart.” Noël was about 11-years-old when he had his first professional acting experience. He was 14 when he became the lover of Philip Streatfeild, a society painter, who took him in and introduced him to high society. He appeared in the D. W. Griffith film “Hearts of the World” (1918) in an uncredited role. He starred in one of his first full-length plays, the inheritance comedy “I’ll Leave It to You,” (1920) at the age of twenty. The controversy surrounding his play “The Vortex” (1924) — which contains many veiled references to both drug abuse and homosexuality — made him an overnight sensation on both sides of the Atlantic. Alongside his highly-publicised tours entertaining Allied troops, Noël was also engaged by the British Secret Service MI5 to conduct intelligence work. He wrote “In Which We Serve,” a film based on the career of Captain Lord Louis Mountbatten. It stared Noël, and he also wrote the music. He co-directed it with David Lean, and it was very popular on both sides of the Atlantic. The film brought Noël an honorary Oscar. He was knighted in 1970. He published 50 plays and many albums of original songs, wrote comic revues, poetry, several volumes of short stories, a novel (“Pomp and Circumstance,” 1960), and three volumes of autobiography.
29
Noël’s last
relationship - after
Jack Wilson
W. Somerset Maugham (author)
Gerald Haxton (?)
about 29
Met when
W. was 40
Francis Poulenc (composer)
Pierre Bernac (baritone)
Francis also had a relationship with Raymond Radiguet, who later partnered with Jean Cocteau, and with Richard Chanelaire.
about 28
Touko Laaksonen (AKA “Tom of Finland” - artist, musician)
Veli (?) (dancer)
Touko was a fetish artist, notable for his stylized, male-focused, homoerotic art, and his influence on late twentieth century gay male culture. His goal: “I work very hard to make sure that the men I draw having sex are proud men having happy sex!” Touko and Veli met in 1953. Their relationship lasted until Veli’s death in 1981. Touko died on November 7, 1991.
28
Sally Ride (physicist, astronaut, author, nationally ranked tennis player, CEO)
Tam O’Shaughnessy (science teacher, author, COO)
Sally was the first American woman to travel into space. She was a crew member on the Space Shuttle Challenger for STS-7 in June 18, 1983. Her second space flight was in 1984, also on the Challenger. She spent a total of more than 343 hours in space.
Sally and Tam first met as 12-year-old tennis players in California. They co-founded Sally Ride Science, in 2001, which creates entertaining science programs and publications for upper elementary and middle school students, with a particular focus on girls.
27
Became partners in 1985
Sally died, at 61, on July 23, 2012
Jean Cocteau (author, poet, painter, filmmaker)
Jean “Jeannot” Marais (actor)
Jean was one of the most influential artists of his time.
26
Met in 1937;
Cocteau died 1963
James Whale (director in theater and film)
David Lewis (producer, studio exec.)
James directed “Frankenstein,” “Invisible Man,” and “Show Boat.”
26
Katharine Lee Bates (poet, author, Wellesley College professor)
Katharine Coman (Wellesley College Dean)
Bates wrote the poem “America the Beautiful:”

“O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!”

25
Sir Nigel Hawthorne (actor)
Trevor Bentham (stage manager, screenwriter)
Nigel was in dozens of theater, films and TV shows. He played opposite Sylvester Stallone in “Demolition Man,” as well as starred in “The Madness of King George” and in the popular TV series “Yes, Prime Minister.”
22
Ended with
Nigel’s death in 2001
Kathryn Hulme (author The Nun’s Story)
Marie-Louise Habets (ex-nun)
21+
Allen Ginsberg (poet)
Peter Orlovsky (poet, gardener)
20
Barbara Charline Jordan (attorney, Texas senator, U.S. representative)
Nancy Earl (?)
Barbara was the first African American to preside over the state senate and chair a major committee, and the first freshman senator named to the Texas Legislative Council. She was a prominent member of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee when it held President Richard M. Nixon’s impeachment hearings. In 1976 Barbara became the first African American to give a keynote address to the Democratic National Convention. In 1992, she was again the keynote speaker at the Democratic National Convention at which she nominated president Bill Clinton. In 1994, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. After retiring from Congress, she taught at U. Texas, Austin. Barbara was very private about her personal life, which included her orientation, religion, and state of health. In 1973, she began to suffer from multiple sclerosis. President Bill Clinton stated he wanted to nominate Jordan for the U.S. Supreme Court, but her health problems prevented that. Even though she and Nancy lived together in a house they built on co-owned property, she did not announce her orientation, most likely for employment and electability reasons. One gets the sense she was not comfortable with her orientation when she said: “There is no way that I can equate discrimination on the basis of sexual preference with discrimination on the basis of skin color.” However, she also said: “The American dream is not dead. It is gasping for breath, but it is not dead.” And one more quote from Barbara: “Just remember the world is not a playground, but a school room. Life is not a holiday, but an education. One eternal lesson for us all: to teach us how better we should love.”
20
Ended with Barbara’s died in 1996
James Buchanan (U.S. Rep & Senator, Sec. of State under Polk, minister to Russia & U.K., 15th President)
William Rufus Devane King (U.S. Senator, minister to France, Vice-Pres. under Franklin Pierce)
20
Graham Chapman (medical doctor, writer)
David Sherlock (writer)
Chapman wrote for and acted in Monty Python’s Flying Circus TV shows and films. He played King Arthur in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” and Brian in the “Life of Brian.” In 1971, Chapman nursed John Tomiczek, a run away teenager from Liverpool, back to health. Sherlock and Chapman agreed to adopt Tomiczek on the condition that he finish school.
20
Sylvia Beach (bookstore owner, publisher)
Adrienne Monnier (writer, publisher)
20
Charlotte Cushman (actor, arts patron)
Emma Stebbins (sculptor)
20
Cris Williamson (singer, songwriter)
Tret Fure (music producer, engineer)
20
Ended in 2000
Janet Flanner (journalist)
Solita Solano (drama critic, editor)
19+
Janet’s 1st relationship
Alexander the Great (known world conqueror)
Hephaistion (Al’s primary cavalry commander and right-hand man)
19
W. Somerset Maugham (writer)
Alan Searle (?)
19
Met when
W. was 72
Joe Orton (playwright)
Kenneth Halliwell (writer)
Joe wrote plays that entertained, scandalized, or outraged, depending on the viewer. He wrote: “Fred and Madge” (1959), “The Visitors” (1961), “The Ruffian on the Stair” (1964), “Entertaining Mr Sloane” (1964), “Loot” (1965), “The Erpingham Camp” (1966), “The Good and Faithful Servant” (1967), “Funeral Games” (1968), “What the Butler Saw” (1969), “Up Against It” (a 1967 screenplay written for and rejected by the Beatles). For self-entertainment, Joe and Kenneth stole books from their local library, and modified the cover art before returning them. For example, a volume of poems by John Betjeman sported a new dust jacket featuring a photograph of a nearly naked, heavily tattooed, middle-aged man. They were eventually charged with theft and malicious damage in 1962, admitting to damaging more than 70 books, jailed for six months, and fined £262. The books they vandalized are now the most valued of the Islington Library service collection. The two men also collaborated on a number of unpublished novels. Their relationship ended when Kenneth killed himself following his killing of Joe on August 9, 1967.
16
Eric Rofes (scholar, author, educator, political activist, gay rights activist)
Crispin Hollings (airplane engine maintenance manager)
Eric was editor of Boston’s Gay Community News, a founder of Boston’s first group for LGBT teachers, two of the first LGBT youth groups in the country, and the Boston Lesbian and Gay Political Alliance which focused on organizing gay and lesbian voters. He was a founding member of the Boston Men’s Childcare Collective, which provided child care at women’s music concerts and shelters for battered women. He was an elected delegate to the 1980 White House Conference on the Family. Eric was executive director of the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Community Center, 1985-1989, and directed San Francisco’s Shanti Project, 1989-1993. He authored:
    “I Thought People Like That Killed Themselves: Lesbians, gay men and suicide” (1983),
    “Socrates, Plato, & Guys Like Me: Confessions of a gay schoolteacher” (1985)
    “Gay Life: Leisure, love, and living for the contemporary gay male” (1986)
    “Living with AIDS on Long Island: A practical guide” (1989)
    “Reviving the Tribe: Regenerating gay men’s sexuality and culture in the ongoing epidemic” (1996)
    “Dry Bones Breathe: Gay men creating post-aids identities and cultures” (1998)
    “A Radical Rethinking of Sexuality & Schooling: Status quo or status queer” (2005)

Eric also edited or co-edited:
    “The Kids’ Book of Divorce: By, for and about Kids” (1981)
    “The Kids’ Book About Parents” (1984)
    “The Kids’ Book About Death and Dying: By and for kids,” (1985)
    “Opposite Sex: Gay men on lesbians, lesbians on gay men” (1998)
    “The Emancipatory Promise of Charter Schools: Toward a progressive politics of school choice” (2004)
    “Youth and Sexualities: Pleasure, subversion, and insubordination in and out of schools” (2004)
16
Al Parker [b. Andrew Okun] (director, producer, porn actor)
Richard Cole (producer, actor)
16
Cary Grant (screen actor)
Randolph Scott (screen actor)
15
Aleta Fenceroy (computer programmer, political activist)
Jean Mayberry (retail employee, political activist)
AKA the “Fenceberrys.” From 1996-2004, they distributed via daily e-mail newspaper articles that had gay content, such as court rulings, a celebrity coming-out stories, editorials and columns, hate crime reports.
15
Ended with Aleta’s dead in 2006
Edward II (king)
Piers Gaveston (prince)
14
Tennessee Williams (playwright)
Frankie Merlo (?)
14
Amy Lowell (poet)
Ada Russell (?)
13
Jean O’Leary (liberation activist, author)
Lisa Phelps (?)
Jean co-founded Lesbian Feminist Liberation in 1972, and National Coming Out Day in 1987. She contributed a chapter to the book “Lesbian Nuns: Breaking Silence.” Jean negotiated an agreement for co-gender management of the National Gay Task Force, and became co-director in 1974. Jean was the first openly lesbian delegate elected to the Democratic National Committee, in 1976, in which she served for 12 years. She organized the first meeting of gay rights advocates in the White House in 1977, and was the first openly gay person appointed to a presidential commission (National Commission on the Observance of International Women’s Year) by president Jimmy Carter in 1979. In the 80s, she built a local San Francisco group, Gay Rights Advocates, into one of the largest national gay and lesbian activist organizations, National Gay Rights Advocates (NGRA). As head of NGRA, Jean pursued “impact litigation” and won important victories protecting gay people from discrimination in employment, housing and other areas. In 1985, NGRA became one of the first advocacy organizations to focus on the legal and civil liberties ramifications of the AIDS epidemic.
12
Ended with Jean’s death in June 2005
Michael Bussee (co-found the anti-gay Exodus International)
Gary Cooper (not the screen actor, an Exodus member)
Exodus International is an anti-gay group that falsely claims orientation conversion. The couple met in an “ex-gay” ministry in late 70s. They denounced the ministry as fraudulent in 1978, and ceremonially married each other in 1982.
12
Ended with Gary’s death in 1991
Melissa Etheridge (singer)
Julie Cypher (film & video director)
They had two children via alternative insemination with rock music performer David Crosby.
12
Ended in 2000
Lige Clarke (author, activist)
Jack Nichols (author, activist)
They published “Gay,” the first U.S. gay weekly newspaper out of New York City (1969–73). They co-wrote “I Have More Fun With You Than Anybody” (1972), and “Roommates Can’t Always Be Lovers: An Intimate Guide to Male/Male Relationships” (1974), as well as a weekly column in the straight “Screw” newspaper called “"Homosexual Citizen"” (1968-73).
Jack edited “Gay” and was co-founder of the Mattachine Societies of Washington, D.C. and Florida. He wrote “The Tomcat Chronicles: Erotic Adventures of a Gay Liberation Pioneer” (2004), “The Gay Agenda: Talking Back to the Fundamentalists” (1996), “Men’s Liberation: A New Definition of Masculinity” (1975), and “Welcome to Fire Island: Visions of Cherry Grove & the Pines” (1976).
11
Ended with Clarke’s death in 1975
Barney Frank (U.S. House of Representatives (D-Mass.))
Herb Moses (potter, Fannie Mae executive)
In 1982, Barney won his first full term, and he has been re-elected ever since by wide margins. In 1987, he became the second openly gay member of the House of Representatives (after Gerry Studds (D-MA)), and he has become one of the most prominent LGBT politicians in the United States. Barney became the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee in 2007, which oversees the entire financial services industry, including the securities, insurance, banking, and housing industries.
11
Ended amicably in 1998
Bayard Rustin (leader in social movements for civil rights, socialism, pacifism, nonviolence, and gay rights)
Walter Naegle (?)
Bayard was a leading activist of the early 1947–1955 civil-rights movement, helping to initiate a 1947 Freedom Ride to challenge, with civil disobedience, racial segregation on interstate busing. He recognized Martin Luther King, Jr.’s leadership, and helped to organize the Southern Christian Leadership Conference to strengthen King’s leadership. Bayard promoted the philosophy of nonviolence and the practices of nonviolent resistance, which he had observed while working with Gandhi’s movement in India. Bayard became a leading strategist of the civil rights movement from 1955–1968. He was the chief organizer of the 1963 “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.” He also influenced young activists, such as Tom Kahn and Stokely Carmichael, in organizations like the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE) and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).
During the 70s, Bayard became a public advocate on behalf of gay and lesbian causes. He testified on behalf of New York State’s Gay Rights Bill. In 1986, he gave a speech “The New Niggers Are Gays,” in which he asserted,
“Today, blacks are no longer the litmus paper or the barometer of social change. Blacks are in every segment of society and there are laws that help to protect them from racial discrimination. The new ‘niggers’ are gays. … It is in this sense that gay people are the new barometer for social change. … The question of social change should be framed with the most vulnerable group in mind: gay people.”
Unpon Bayard’s death, in 1987, Walter became executor of the Bayard Rustin estate.
10
Armistead Maupin (author)
Terry Anderson (?)
Armistead wrote the Tales of the City series.
10
Armistead later partnered
with Christopher Turner
Billy Strayhorn (composer)
Aaron Bridgers (pianist)
Billy composed such well-known songs as “Take the ‘A’ Train,” co-wrote many songs with Duke Ellington, and was his arranger for many years.
10
Billy’s 1st relationship,
later partnered with Bill Grove
Gianni Versace (fashion designer)
Antonio D’Amico (?)
10+
James Charles Stuart (King James VI of Scotland and King James I of England)
George Villiers (Duke of Buckingham)
James was the author of the “Basilicon Doron,” King, and commissioned the 1611 version of the Bible. James bestowed upon his love the titles of knight, earl, and finally duke. James wrote: “You may be sure that I love the Earl of Buckingham more than anyone else, and more than you who are here assembled. I wish to speak in my own behalf and not to have it thought to be a defect, for Jesus Christ did the same, and therefore I cannot be blamed. Christ had John, and I have George.”
10+
Walt Whitman (poet)
Peter Doyle (streetcar conductor)
10
Sir Laurence Olivier (actor)
Danny Kaye (actor, singer, comedian, humanitarian)
10
Relationship lasted until Laurence’s
third wife, Joan Plowright, objected.
Noël Peirce Coward (playwright, songwriter, actor, director, author)
Jack Wilson (business manager, producer)
Jack produced Noël’s play “Design for Living.”
10
Noël’s 1st major
relationship - before
Graham Payn
Oscar Wilde (author, playwright)
Lord Alfred Douglas (?)
9
Martina Navratilova (tennis champion)
Judy Nelson (businesswoman)
8
Ended in 1991
Angelina Weld Grimké (author, abolitionist)
Mamie Burrill (?)
7
Sara Teasdale (poet)
Margaret Conklin (?)
7
Publius Aelius Hadrian (Roman emperor)
Antinous (slave or page, household favorite)
Hadrian (76-138 AD), considered one of the greatest Roman emperors. They met when Hadrian was 39 and Antinous was about 14. Rather than an accident or suicide, some say Antinous may have been drowned in Egypt by jealous imperial servants. Hadrian was extremely distraught over Antinous’ death. He declared the former slave or page to be a god, and, on the spot where his body was found, named a city, Antinopolis, after him. Statues of Antinous were carved to honour the new deity, and were erected throughout the Roman empire. They often mimicked the form of the Egyptian god Osiris, who also drowned in the Nile.
6
Bill T. Jones (artistic director, choreographer, dancer, author)
Arnie Zane (dancer, choreographer, photographer)
Bill choreographed and performed worldwide as a soloist and duet company with his partner, Arnie, before forming the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in 1982.
6+
Ended with Arnie’s death in 1998
Jean Cocteau (author, poet, painter, filmmaker)
Raymond Radiguet (poet, playwrite, author)
Jean was one of the most influential artists of his time. Raymond wrote “Le Diable au Corps” (Devil in the Flesh) which was adapted into film in 1946, and “Le Bal du Comte d’Orgel” (The Count’s Ball).
6
Ended with Raymond’s death in 1923
Jasper Johns (artist)
Robert Rauschenberg (artist)
6
Ended in 1961
Harvey Milk (Navy lieutenant, actuary, financial researcher, shopkeeper, city commissioner, city supervisor, gay activist)
Joe Campbell (?)
Harvey ran for public office three times
Harvey ran for public office Harvey also had shorter-running relationships with gay activist Craig Rodwell (began the 1st exclusively gay content bookstore) in 1962, Jack Galen McKinley in about 1964, Joseph Scott Smith (see listing immediately below) in or before 1972, and Jack Lira in 1978. Scott became partners with Harvey in a San Francisco camera store business as well as organizing and managing Harvey’s election campaign to public office from 1974-77.
Joe later had a relationship with Oliver “Bill” Sipple, who saved president Gerald Ford’s life when a shooting attempt was made in 1975.
6
Ended in 1962
Harvey Milk (Navy lieutenant, actuary, financial researcher, shopkeeper, city commissioner, city supervisor, gay activist)
Joseph Scott Smith (store owner, political campaign manager, gay activist)
“What set Harvey apart from you or me was that he was a visionary. He imagined a righteous world inside his head and then he set about to create it for real, for all of us.” - Anne Kronenberg, Harvey’s campaign manager.
Scott became partners with Harvey in a San Francisco camera store bushiness. Scott organized and managed Harvey’s election campaign to public office from 1974-77. He also orchestrated a successful Coors Beer boycott.
6
Ended in 1978
T.E. Lawrence (archaeologist, spy, author)
Dahoum (personal assistant)
5
Abraham Lincoln (lawyer, U.S. president)
Joshua Speed (merchant, editor)
On April 15, 1837, an impoverished Abraham Lincoln, 28, met Joshua Speed, 22, at his general store in Springfield, Illinois, and immediately agreed to share a bed with him in his living quarters above the store. They continued to share their bed for four years. They must have had a lot of interesting discussions because Joshua was the son of a plantation and slave owner. When Joshua told Abraham that he was returned to his native Kentucky, Abraham had a nervous breakdown. Abraham wrote at the time: “I am now the most miserable man living. Whether I shall ever be better I can not tell; I awfully forbode I shall not. To remain as I am is impossible; I must die or be better, it appears to me.” They remained friends throughout life. Abraham penned passionate letters to Joshua Speed, which he signed “yours forever,” a phrase he never wrote to his wife.
4
Serge Diaghilev (impresario)
Vaslav Nijinsky (dancer)
4
Rock Hudson (actor)
Marc Christian (chauffeur, houseboy?)
4
John Treville Latouche (author, lyricist, opera librettist)
Kenward Elmslie (poet, lyricist, opera librettist)
John provided lyrics for Bernstein’s “Candide,” and Kenward the lyrics for “The Grass Harp.” Their life partnership was cut short by John’s death in 1956.
4
Billy Strayhorn (composer)
Bill Grove (?)
Strayhorn composed such well-known songs as “Take the ‘A’ Train,” co-wrote many songs with Duke Ellington, and was his arranger for many years.
3
Billy’s 2nd relationship
ended with his death in 1967
First partner was Aaron Bridgers
Akhenaten - formerly Amenhotep IV (pharaoh: 10th king, 18th dynasty)
Smenkhkare (co-ruler)
3+
Liberace (Walter Valentino) (piano entertainer, philanthropist)
Scott Thorson (chauffeur, houseboy?)
3
Paul Verlaine (poet)
Arthur Rimbaud (poet)
2
Anthony Perkins (actor, director)
Tab Hunter (Arthur Andrew Kelm) (actor, singer)
Tab had a relationship with actor Anthony Perkins, champion figure skater Ronnie Robertson, and settled in with Allan Glaser in 1982.
2
Pedro Zamora (educator, activist)
Sean Sasser (educator, activist)
Pedro and Sean met at the 1993 March on Washington for Equal Rights for Gay, Lesbians and Bisexuals. They re-connected on February 12, 1994, when Pedro came to San Francisco to tape “The Real World,” a semi-documentary on MTV. They developed a relationship that was documented on that show, including their engagement, and their marriage was aired. They campaigned for HIV awareness. Pedro died November 11, 1994, the day The Real World aired Pedro’s household’s final episode.
1
Eleanor Roosevelt (philanthropist, presidential first lady)
Lorena Hickok (reporter)
Unknown
Francis Poulenc (composer)
Richard Chanelaire (painter)
Francis dedicated his Concert Champêtre to Richard: “You have changed my life, you are the sunshine of my thirty years, a reason for living and working.”
Unknown
Susan Sontag (author, critic)
Annie Liebovitz (photographer)
In a 2000 interview in London’s Guardian newspaper, Sontag spoke of her bisexuality, describing the nine “loves of her life” which included five men and four women. In a 2000 New Yorker interview, Sontag said, “That I have had girlfriends as well as boyfriends is what? Is something I guess I never thought I was supposed to have to say, since it seems to me the most natural thing in the world.” In 2001, Time magazine reported that Sontag and Leibovitz were raising a child. This was mentioned in a People Magazine obit. Time reported that Leibovitz had given birth to a daughter, Sarah Cameron Leibovitz.
Unknown
(One source suggested 20 years)
Armistead Maupin (author)
Christopher Turner (?)
They married, Februray 2007, in Canada. Armistead wrote the Tales of the City series.
Unknown
Armistead was partnered
with Terry Anderson
Katherine Bradley (author)
Edith Cooper (author)
They were aunt and niece — living their whole lives together — and wrote books under the shared pen name of “Michael Field.”
Unknown
Margaret Anderson (co-founder of The Little Review)
Jane Heap (co-founder of The Little Review)
Unknown
Margaret Anderson (co-founder of The Little Review)
Georgette Leblanc (soprano, author)
Unknown
Relationship followed
Margaret and Jane Heap’s
Margaret Anderson (co-founder of The Little Review)
Dorothy (Enrico) Caruso (author)
Unknown
Relationship followed
Georgette Leblanc’s and
Enrico’s deaths
Jane Heap (co-founder of The Little Review)
Elspeth Champcommunal (clothing designer)
Unknown
Relationship followed
Jane and Margarete Anderson’s
William III (King of England)
William Bentinck (?)
Unknown
Sergius (saint)
Bacchus (saint)
Unknown
Achilles (warrior)
Patroclus (warrior)
The Greeks would have completely perished during their siege of Troy, had not Achilles been stirred to vengeance by the death of his lover Patroclus.
Literary depiction of the exact sexual nature of their relationship runs the range from their being sexual lovers - to “just pals” or “war buds” - to suppression of any whiff of affection. Those who wrote about their relationship as being that of lovers include: Aeschylus (The Myrmidons), Plato (Symposium), Aeschines (in a speech at his trial), Shakespeare (Troilus and Cressida), Mary Renault (as examples of homoerotic love in various novels), Christa Wolf (Cassandra), and Dan Simmons (Ilium)
Unknown
Epaminondas (statesman, warrior) with
Asopichus (warrior) - and later with
Caphisodorus (warrior)
Epaminondas was above reproach in the eyes of the ancient historians who recorded his deeds. Contemporaries praised him for disdaining material wealth, sharing what he had with his friends, and refusing bribes. One of the last heirs of the Pythagorean tradition, he appears to have lived a simple and ascetic lifestyle even when his leadership had raised him to a position at the head of all Greece. Epaminondas never married and, as such, was subject to criticism from countrymen who believed he was duty-bound to provide the country with the benefit of sons as great as himself. He is known, however, to have had several young male lovers, a standard pedagogic practice in ancient Greece. Plutarch records two of his beloveds (eromenoi): Asopichus, who fought together with him at the battle of Leuctra, where he greatly distinguished himself; and Caphisodorus, who fell with Epaminondas at Mantineia and was buried by his side.
Unknown
Francis Beaumont (dramatist)
John Fletcher (?)
Unknown
John Maynard Keynes (economist)
Duncan Grant (painter)
Unknown
Frederico Garcia Lorca (author, poet, playwright)
Phillip Cummings (?)
Unknown
Anne Cormac Bonny (pirate)
Mary Read, alias “Mark” Read (pirate)
These two women where hot-headed, bisexuals who also happened to be thieves, arsonists, and cut-throat murderers. Historical knowledge about them is based largely upon “A General History of the Robberies and Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates,” by Captain Charles Johnson (probably a pseudonym for Daniel Defoe). It was published in 1724 after Anne and Mary were brought to trial for piracy on the high seas in 1720.
Unknown
Lucius Morris Beebe (author; philanthropist)
Charles Clegg (literary collaborator)
Lucius was named one of the ten best-dressed men in America for several years. He and Charles traveled for many years in Lucius’s elaborate, private railroad car. Among the more than 30 books Lucius wrote were many on railroads.
Unknown
Cheng I (pirate)
Chang Pao (pirate, military colonel)
Pirating in the South Seas, Cheng I kidnapped Chang Pao, 15. They became lovers, then Cheng adopted Chang. After Cheng’s death, and a failed campaign to become emperor Chang became a colonel in the Chinese army.
Unknown
Gilgamesh (Babylonian king)
Enkidu (the king’s right-hand man)
Tales of heroic deeds by this couple are recounted in the world’s earliest known epic poem, “Gilgamesh” (2,000-2,700 years BC). In one version of the tale, Gilgamesh is so distraught when Enkidu dies that he travels to the underworld in an attempt to retrieve him.
Unknown


Famous Contemporary Couples Relationship Started In
Tiny [Ernestine] Davis (musician)
Ruby Lucas (musician)
1948
Arthur Laurents (playwright, novelist, screenwriter, librettist, stage director)
Tom Hatcher (?)
Arthur wrote the play “Jolson Sings Again,” the books for “West Side Story,” “Gypsy,” “Anyone Can Whistle,” and “Do I Hear a Waltz?,” which was based on his play “Time of the Cuckoo.” His novels “The Way We Were,” and “The Turning Point,” became successful films for which Laurents wrote the screenplays. He also wrote the screenplays for “Rope,” “The Snake Pit,” and “Anastasia.”
1955
Barbara Gittings (activist, editor, bibliographer)
Kay Tobin Lahusen (activist, writer, photographer)
1961
Arthur J. Finkelstein (political consultant)
? (?) [unnamed in articles]
For 25 years, since 1980, Arthur directed a series of hard-edged, mean-spirited political campaigns to elect (often gay-hating) conservatives in the United States and Israel. He has been allied with Republicans — including the rabidly phobic former Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina — who have fiercely opposed any civil rights for gay men and lesbians. Arthur has regularly described himself as a libertarian who supports same-sex marriage and abortion rights, while opposing big government. In an interview with Maariv, an Israeli newspaper, after the American elections in 2004, he criticized the Republican Party as growing too close to evangelical Christians, warning it could cause long-term damage to the party. In December 2004, Arthur and his partner had a legal marriage in Massachusetts. They have two adopted children.
1964
Phillip Johnson (architect)
David Whitney (art curator, collector)
1967
Lily Tomlin (actor)
Jane Wagner (writer, director)
“No one believes, or they can’t accept, that I don’t write the material, or at least write a big part of it. But I don’t. I’m a very good editor, I’m a very good perceiver of material, and I’m Jane’s typist.” - David Schmader interview, The Stranger, September 7, 2000
Jane and Lily were married on January 1, 2014
~1972
Jim Nabors (actor, singer)
Stan Cadwallader (fire fighter)
Jim and Stan legally married in Seattle on January 15, 2013.
Before they were married, Jim said, “It’s pretty obvious that we had no rights as a couple, yet when you’ve been together 38 years, I think something’s got to happen there, you’ve got to solidify something. And at my age (82), it’s probably the best thing to do.”
Jim: “I’m very happy that I’ve had a partner of 38 years and I feel very blessed. And, what can I tell you, I’m just very happy.”
Quotes from the Hawaii News Now
1975
Karen-Christine (Kim) Friele (author, gay rights activist)
Wenche Lowzow (school principal, Oslo district manager for the Norwegian Girl Scout Association, retired Norwegian Conservative Party MP)
Kim and Wenche registered as domestic partners in 1993. Their legal relationship was upgraded to marriage on January 1, 2009. Kim and Wenche led the Oslo Pride Parade in June 2010.
Kim is credited as the first Norwegian lesbian to come out and take a stand for equality, and has been an integral part of the LGBT rights movement in Norway for decades. She has influenced the abolishment of criminalization of homosexual acts in 1972 and for declassifying homosexuality as a psychiatric condition in 1978.
In 1982, Wenche and her partner Kim where invited to a U.S. Congressional hearing. To obtain an entry permit they had to obtain an exemption from the visa provisions, because, at the time, homosexuality was classified as a disease. Even with a visa, they were limited to stay in the Washington, DC area. This anti-gay law was finally amended in 1988.
1977
Scott Wittman (composer)
Marc Shaiman (composer)
Upon winning Best Score at the 2003 Tonys for “Hairspray,” personal and professional partners Scott and Marc shared a big same-sex type kiss before an internationally televised audience. They kissed right after Marc said, “We’re not allowed to get married in this world. … but I’d like to declare in front of all these people I love you, and I’d like to live with you the rest of my life.”
1978
Martina Navratilova (tennis champion)
Rita Mae Brown (author)
1978-1981
Howard Cruse (cartoonist, author)
Ed Sedarbaum (editor, political activist)
Howard Cruse, an “underground” cartoonist of the 60s, created Barefootz and Wendel and was the founding editor of “Gay Comix.” His comic strips and cartoon illustrations have appeared in dozens of national magazines, comic books, and anthologies, as well as in four book collections of his own. Since 1979, he has shared his life in New York City and in Massachusetts with book editor and political activist Ed Sedarbaum. Cruse’s fictional graphic novel, Stuck Rubber Baby was published in 1995 by Paradox Press (DC Comics).
1979
Martina Navratilova (tennis champion)
Nancy Lieberman (basketball pro)
1981-1984
John Rechy (author)
? (?) [unnamed in articles]
John wrote:
   “City of Night” (1963)
   “Numbers” (1967)
   “This Day’s Death” (1969)
   “The Vampires” (1971)
   “The Fourth Angel” (1972)
   “The Sexual Outlaw” (1977)
   “Rushes” (1979)
   “Bodies and Souls” (1983)
   “Marilyn’s Daughter” (1988)
   “The Miraculous Day of Amalia Gomez” (1991)
   “Our Lady of Babylon” (1996)
   “The Coming of the Night” (1999)
   “The Life and Adventures of Lyle Clemens” (2003)
   “Beneath the Skin” (2004)
1981
Raymond Mungo (author)
Robert H. Yamaguchi (?)
Ray Mungo, well-known counter-cultural figure of the 60s, co-founded the Liberation News Service in Washington, DC in 1967. He authored titles such as “Famous Long Ago,” “Return to Sender,” “Palm Springs Babylon,” “San Francisco Confidential,” “No Credit Required,” and “Liberace: Lives of Notable Gay Men and Lesbians.” His Atlantic Monthly article, “Total Loss Farm,” about a year in a Vermont commune, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
1981
Tab Hunter (b. Arthur Andrew Kelm, later used mother’s maiden name Art Gelien) (actor, singer) Allan Glaser (movie producer)
Tab had relationships with actor Anthony Perkins, and champion figure skater Ronnie Robertson, before settling down with Allan Glaser in 1982. In Tab’s 2005 best selling autobiography, “Tab Hunter Confidential: The Making of a Movie Star,” (written with Eddie Muller) he acknowledged his homosexuality.
1982
Steve Gunderson (U.S. House of Representatives (R-Wis.))
Rob Morris (architect)
1983
Mel White (minister, author)
Gary Nixon (?)
Mel founded Soul Force, a non-violent, justice movement. He wrote “Stanger at the Gate”
1984
Domenico Dolce (clothing designer)
Stefano Gabbana (clothing designer)
Amicable dissolution. They continue to work together on their “D&G” brand
1984-2004
Troy Perry (Rev. Elder, moderator and founder of Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Church)
Phillip Ray DeBlieck (?)
Legally married in canada. They were part of Tyler vs. the State of California which helped win the right to legal marriage in California.
[See our article: California Offers Marriage]
1985
Steve McDonagh (caterer)
Dan Smith (caterer)
The couple produce Food Network TV show “Party Line with Dan & Steve.” They owned “The Hearty Boys Caterers,” and own a restaurant called “HB.” The two became parents in 2005 when they adopted Nate, who was nearly five months old.
1985
Colin McAllister (interior designer)
Justin Ryan (interior designer)
This Scottish couple co-host television programs, such as “Trading Up” (BBC1) and “The Million Pound Property Experiment” (BBC1), on interior design and on how to make money on your home.
1986
George Takei (actor)
Brad Altman Takei (theatrical manager)
George created the role of Lt. Hikaru Sulu on the “Star Trek” TV series and movie sequels. George and Brad were legally married on June 17, 2008. Their “best man” was Walter Koenig, (who played Chekov on “Star Trek”), and “best lady” was Nichelle Nichols (who played Uhura on “Star Trek”). Due to their extensive work as advocates for marriage, anti-bullying efforts, and LGBT equality, George and Brad were among the Grand Marshals at the 2013 San Diego Pride Parade.
1987
Minnie Bruce Pratt (poet, essayist, educator, activist)
Leslie Feinberg (writer, activist)
? about 1988
Col. Margarethe Cammermeyer (soldier, nurse, activist)
Diane Divelbess (?)
1988
Urvashi Vaid (author, political activist, gay rights advocate)
Kate Clinton (comedian, author)
Urvashi founded the Boston Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance (1983), led the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute (1989) for a total of seven years. Urvashi wrote “Virtual Equality: The mainstreaming of gay and lesbian liberation” (1996). Kate wrote: “Don’t Get Me Started” (2000), “What the L” (2005).
1988
Jeremy Davies (Canon, Precentor of Salisbury Cathedral)
Simon McEnery (opera singer)
They joined in a U.K. Civil Partnership on January 8, 2006.
1988
Janis Ian (singer, songwriter)
Patricia Snyder (criminal defense attorney)
1989
Joe Baldassare (mineral trading company owner)
Bill Bartek (real estate agent)
In 2001, Joe and Bill placed third as contestants on the widely-seen CBS globe-trotting show called “The Amazing Race.” They were the third non-fiction, same-sex couple to appear on a nationally broadcast U.S. show. The first was Pedro Zamora and Sean Sasser (mentioned elsewhere in this article) who were married on air in 1994 on “The Real World” MTV series. The second was Danny and Paul on the same show in 2000. (See our companion article: Famous Fictional Same-Sex Couples on Television)
1989
Gene Robinson (Bishop Coadjutor of the Diocese of New Hampshire)
Mark Andrew (?)
Gene is the first openly gay reverend to be elected bishop in the Episcopal Church, Anglican Communion, August 5, 2003.
1990
Alan Bennett (playwright, actor)
Rupert Thomas (journalist)
Bennett co-authored the stage revue “Beyond the Fringe.” He starred in it along with Dudley Moore, Peter Cooke, and Jonathan Miller. He later also wrote for TV and film, including “The Madness of George III.”
?
John Barrowman (actor, dancer, singer, writer)
Scott Gill (architect)
John plays Captain Jack Harkness in the 2005 revival of Doctor Who and stars in the Torchwood series. They registered as “Civil Partners” on December 27, 2006.
1991
Carsten Damsgaard (Denmark’s ambassador to Israel)
Esben Karmak (Ph.D., employed by a Copenhagen business school)
Carsten and Esben were the first same-sex couple to register as partners in the foreign service.
1992
Mary Cheney (campaign manager, corporate executive, author)
Heather Poe (business manager)
Mary is the daughter of the vice president of the United States. Said Mary in USA Today on May 8, 2006: “As far as I’m concerned, Heather and I are married. We’ve built a home and a life together. She is the person I hope to spend the rest of my life with. We’re just waiting for the state and federal laws to catch up with us.”
1992
Camille Paglia (author)
Alison Maddex (curator)
1993
Sir Elton John (singer, songwriter, activist)
David Furnish (film producer)
After 12 years together, they joined in a British “civil partnership” on December 21, 2005. On December 25, 2010, their son, Zachary Jackson Levon Furnish-John was born.
1993
Larry Kramer (playwright, author, gay rights advocate)
David Webster (architect)
Larry co-produced and co-wrote the film “Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush.” He produced and wrote the screenplay for “Women in Love.” He wrote the plays “The Normal Heart,” “The Destiny of Me,” “Just Say No, A Play about a Farce,” and the novel “Faggots.” Larry co-founded Gay Men’s Health Crisis, ACT-UP, and founded the Treatment Data Project. David and Larry first met in 1977, when they were in a 3-4 year relationship at that time. As of July 2013, they plan on getting legally married.
1995
Tim Miller (performance artist, writer, gay rights advocate)
Alistair McCartney (?)
Tim Miller is an internationally acclaimed performance artist. His creative work as a performer and writer explores the artistic, spiritual, and political topography of his identity as a gay man.
1994
Jodie Foster (actor, director, producer)
Cydney Bernard (film producer)
Jodie has twice won the Academy Award, as well as won two Golden Globes, three BAFTA awards, and a Screen Actors Guild Award, making her one of the few people to have won all four major motion picture acting awards. She dubs herself in the French versions of most of her films. The year following her starring in the sci-fi movie “Contact,” in 1997, asteroid “17744 Jodiefoster” was named in her honor.
1994-2008
Kevin Sharkey (painter)
Ade Antigha (business manager, photographer, former cop)
1995
Ed Flanagan (Vermont State Senator)
Isaac Lustgarten (attorney)
Flanagan was the first gay official elected to a statewide position in the United States. He was elected state auditor in 1992, which he held for four terms until 1998. He was elected a senator for the state of Vermont in 2004.
1995
Edmund White (author, activist)
Michael Carroll (writer)
Edmund co-founded the Gay Men’s Health Crisis. He wrote “A Boy’s Own Story” (1982), “The Joy of Gay Sex” (1977), “The Married Man” (2000), and “Hotel de Dream” (2007).
1995
George Michael (singer, musician, composer)
Kenny Goss (businessman)
1996
Stephen Fry (actor, author, director)
Daniel Cohen (salesman)
1996
Sophie Ward (actor, activist)
Rena Brannan (writer)
1996
Gregory Maguire (author)
Andy Newman (painter)
Gregory and Andy adopted three children and were married in Massachusetts in 2004.
Gregory wrote at least 21 books for children and at least six novels, including “Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West” (1995), “Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister” (1999), “Lost” (2001), “Mirror, Mirror” (2003), “Son of a Witch” (2005), and “A Lion Among Men” (2008).
1997
Ellen DeGeneres (actor, entertainer, author)
Anne Heche (actor)
Elen later had a relationship with Portia de Rossi (see below). Ellen has been very public, and (usually comedically) outspoken about gay and lesbian civil rights.
1997-2000
Rosie O’Donnell (actor, entertainer)
Kelli Carpenter O’Donnell (marketing executive)
1998
Jason Tree (Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman)
David Connors (Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman)
The constables are the first mounties to legally marry. Their June 2006 marriage took place in Nova Scotia.
1998
Sheryl Swoopes (athlete)
Alisa Scott (coach)
Sheryl is a three-time WNBA Most Valuable Player, as well as an Olympic gold medalist winner. She plays with the Houston Comets.
1999
Rachel Maddow (TV and radio host)
Susan Mikula (artist)
Gay activist Rachel hosts talk shows on MSNBC and on Air America. She was a Rhodes Scholar and wrote her doctoral dissertation comparing AIDS policies in the California with British prison systems. Susan works in photography.
1999
Chrissy Gephardt (political activist, social worker)
Amy Loder (social worker)
Chrissy is the openly lesbian daughter of 2004 presidential candidate Dick Gephardt. Chrissy came out as the first openly lesbian daughter of a presidential candidate in history.
2000
Suze Orman (financial advisor, author, motivational speaker, TV host)
Kathy Travis (branding for an advertising film, TV producer, manager)
In 1987, Suze founded the Suze Orman Financial Group. She wrote the best-selling books “The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom” (1997) and “The Courage to be Rich” (1998). In her book, “Women and Money: Owning the Power to Control Your Destiny” (2007), she posits that women, instead of investing money, would rather save or give it to those who need it, including their children and their best friends.
2000
Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir (Prime Minister of Iceland)
Jónína Leósdóttir (author, playwright)
In 2002, Jóhanna and Jónína obtained a domestic partner registration. They became one of the first same-sex married couples in Iceland when same-sex marriage was legalised in 2010.
Jóhanna was previously Iceland’s Minister of Social Affairs (1987–1994) and Social Security (2007–2009). She has been a member of the Althing (Iceland’s parliament) for Reykjavík constituencies since 1978, winning re-election on eight successive occasions. She became Iceland’s first female Prime Minister on 1 February 2009, the world’s first openly LGBT head of government of the modern era. Jóhanna is a social democrat and Iceland's longest-serving member of Parliament.
2000
Terrence McNally (playwright)
Thomas Kirdahy (public advocate lawyer)
McNally wrote: “The Ritz,” (1975), and “Corpus Christi” (1997). He received Tony Awards for “Love! Valour! Compassion!” (1995), “Master Class” (1996), “Kiss of the Spider Woman” (1993), and “Ragtime” (1998). Mr. McNally also wrote “Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune” (1987), and “Lips Together, Teeth Apart” (1991). He has also won two Guggenheim Fellowships, a Rockefeller Grant, the Lucille Lortel Award, the Hull-Warriner Award, and a citation from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
Terrence and Thomas had a Civil Union in Vermont in December 2003.
2001
Evan Wolfson (lawyer, author, teacher, political activist, founder and executive director of Freedom to Marry)
Cheng He (change-management consultant, molecular biologist)
While Evan served as assistant district attorney for Kings County (Brooklyn), he handled felony trials and appeals and wrote amicus briefs that helped win the U.S. Supreme Court’s ban on race discrimination in jury selection (Batson v. Kentucky), and the New York State high court’s elimination of the marital rape exemption (People v. Liberta).
Evan authored “Why Marriage Matters; America, Equality, and Gay People’s Right to Marry.”
Evan was listed as one of Time magazine's “100 Most Influential People in the World” in 2004.
From Evan: “After nearly two years of marriage, and nearly 12 years as a couple, I can now sponsor my husband, Cheng He, for a green card. Cheng is a Canadian citizen, born in China, who came to the U.S. first to study and now to work. We married soon after we won the freedom to marry here in New York, but, like so many, we were denied respect for our marriage when it came to immigration and all other federal programs. Now, thanks to lots of hard work by Freedom to Marry and our partner organizations, couples like Cheng and me throughout the country will be treated with respect by the federal government.”
Cheng and Evan were married on October 15, 2011.
2001
k.d. lang (b. Kathryn Dawn Lang - singer, songwriter, musician)
Jamie Price (attorney)
“ I’ve been in a relationship for the last six years and I’m happy. Her name is Jamie Price.” - from “And on the seventh day she got naked” article by Lawrence Ferber, in the Windy City Times, January 23, 2008 and reprinted widely.

k.d.’s vocal work is widely acclaimed, winning her many awards, including the Grammy in 1988, 1989, 1992, 1993, and 2003. In 1996, she was made an Officer of the Order of Canada, the highest civilian honor within Canadian. She publicly declared being lesbian in 1992, and, in the 90s, took a stand for vegetarianism and against the beef industry.

2002
Neil Patrick Harris (actor, singer, director, producer, magician)
David Burtka (actor, chef)
Neil and David are raising fraternal twins.
2003
Stephen Gately (singer, actor)
Andy Cowles (internet entrepreneur)
Stephen former sang with Boyzone, an Irish band. They joined in a British civil partnership on March 20, 2006.
2003
Armistead Maupin (author, screenplay writer)
Christoper Turner (Web site producer, photographer)
Armistead is most well-known for his “Tales of the City,” which feature characters that continue in a series of novels. Armistead and Christopher were married in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, on February 18, 2007.
2004
Ellen DeGeneres (actor, entertainer, author)
Portia de Rossi (actor)
Ellen and Portia were married in California on August 16, 2008. Both are vegan. Ellen has been very public, and (usually comedically) outspoken about gay and lesbian civil rights. Ellen’s mother, Betty DeGeneres, is an active member of PFLAG and spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign’s Coming Out Project.
2004
Mark Feehily (singer)
Kevin McDaid (singer)
Mark sings with the group Westlife, the Irish boy band. As of January 2006, the group has 12 number-one hit singles in the U.K. Kevin formerly sung with the group called V.
2005
Rufus Wainwright (singer, songwriter)
Jörn Weisbrodt (concert and theater manager)
Says Rufus: “We’re a typical gay couple, except we don’t have a dog yet.”
2005
Barney Frank (U.S. House of Representatives (D-Mass.))
James (Jim) F. Ready (carpenter and business owner)
In 1982, Barney won his first full term, and he has been re-elected ever since by wide margins. In 1987, he became the second openly gay member of the House of Representatives (after Gerry Studds (D-MA)), and he has become one of the most prominent LGBT politicians in the United States. Barney became the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee in 2007, which oversees the entire financial services industry, including the securities, insurance, banking, and housing industries.
2007
Brad Taylor (student)
Dylan Meehan (student)
Dylan and Brad met in June 2012, when they were 17 and 16, and came out to their parents a week later. They were voted by fellow students as the Cutest Couple in their Carmel, New York, High School yearbook, and attended their senior prom as a couple. Both have 4.0 grade-point averages and have received scholarships to attend NYU.
2012
Richard Chamberlain (actor, author)
Martin Rabbett (producer, director)
?
Paula Vogel (playwright, teacher, 1998 Pulitzer Prize winner)
Ann Fausto-Sterling (?)
Paula and Ann married in Massachusetts in 2004. Paula told Rhode Island legislators that she is a writer-in-exile from her former Rhode Island residence “because I do not want to live in a place where I do not have full civil rights, equal rights.”
?
Melissa Etheridge (musician)
Tammy Lynn Michaels (actor)
Exchanged vows and wedding bands, September 21, 2003.
?

Additions and corrections are welcome. Please tell us:
       • Names of the couple
       • Their professions
       • Years together, or, for contemporary couples, the year the relationship started
       • Your information source

© 2014, Demian
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