According to WBRU in Boston, Paul Glass and Charles Evans — now married — were both at the Stonewall Uprising, separately, when the riots broke out in 1969.
But they didn’t know it until recently.
Glass was a teenager living in Boston at the time, and decided to take a trip to New York to explore “more of what the gay life had to offer” in Greenwich Village. He and Evans, both African American, had met the previous year and dated long distance. Things didn’t work out.
“I kind of sneaked in town without telling him,” Glass says. “I was on the opposite end of Christopher Street down near the piers and was working my way back up towards Sheridan Square when folks were kind of running down the street and sending out word almost like the town crier that there was a commotion going on up in Sheridan Square, so everybody kind of ran in that direction.”
Evans was coming from a club on the opposite end of Christopher Street, Glass says, “so we never really saw one another.” Both men tell Here & Now they weren’t afraid as the riots unfolded. They say they were accustomed to police raids on gay clubs in the city, and that they remember feeling power in numbers.
“It was one of the first times that the gays … felt as though they were no longer subhuman. They felt that they should be respected, and they had rights,” Glass says. “For a long time, certainly from my perspective, being the time that I had been out in gay life, the attitude was pretty much you didn’t have any rights. So you just had to go along and comply with whatever was the order of the day.”
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