You’ve found the home of the Old Lesbian Oral Herstory Project
The Old Lesbian Oral Herstory Project seeks to find and document the lives of old lesbians who were born in the early years of the last century. The lives that they led were difficult and in many ways difficult for us, today, to understand. There were no LGBT publications, institutions or even personal examples to help guide their lives. They had to make it up as they went along. We seek to record their oral histories, known here as their herstories, to preserve what will soon be lost when they are all gone.
Before you browse the Old Lesbian Oral Herstory Project website,we’d like to share a few photos taken from the various stories in the OLOHP collection. The photos will advance automtically or you can click on one to move more quickly to the next.
The Old Lesbian Oral Herstory Project, OLOHP, began in 1997 when Arden Eversmeyer started working to save the stories of women she knew who were ill and dying in her area, Houston, Texas. Next, she began collecting stories from friends as she traveled. And now, she and others are working to collect the life stories of lesbians 70 and older wherever they are found and whenever they are willing to share them.
Arden was, at that time, also integrally involved in OLOC, Old Lesbians Organizing for Change, as a Co-Director. In October 2000, OLOC agreed to serve as a sponsor for the project, helping Arden connect with more old lesbians.
There is an urgency inherent in the nature of the OLOHP. Each year, women whose stories the Project wanted to gather slip away. Some old lesbians die before we are able to interview them; others become unable to do the interview.
The herstories of these women who lived through a unique period in time need to be preserved. They deserve to be recognized for their experiences and contributions to the lives we live today.
And, just as importantly, there are thousands of other old lesbians who need to know they are not alone.