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Historian Gareth Watkins looks back at the May dates that shaped Aotearoa’s queer community forever. 20 May 1863 Reverend Henry Turton of Nelson stood trial at the Supreme Court on a charge of sodomy.  One of Turton’s servants, Isaac Nash, told the court how he had been summoned to Turton’s bedroom...
Historian Gareth Watkins explores April stories from Aotearoa’s queer past. 30 April 1886 Australian-born Amy Bock received her first of many convictions in New Zealand.  An early newspaper report described Bock as having a “perfect mania for what she called ‘shopping’ which consisted of ordering goods she did not require...
Historian Gareth Watkins explores significant March dates in Aotearoa’s queer past, to see what March has given us. 10 March 1953 Activist and counsellor Mani Bruce Mitchell was born in Mount Eden, Auckland. Identified (inaccurately) as hermaphrodite at birth, Mitchell was subjected to non-consensual normalising genital surgeries as a child,...
Historian Gareth Watkins explores significant February dates from past, to see how the month of love and pride has shaped us. February 1817 Feminist and businesswoman Mary Taylor was born in Yorkshire, England. In her twenties she emigrated to New Zealand.  Her life-long friend and possibly lover, Charlotte Bronte, wrote of...
Historian Gareth Watkins documents significant January dates from Aotearoa’s past queer calendar. 9 January 1923 One of New Zealand’s most famous writers, Katherine Mansfield, died in France from tuberculosis. After her death, husband John Middleton Murry edited and published a journal of her writings - intentionally omitting material dealing with Mansfield’s...
Gareth Watkins highlights significant August dates from Aotearoa’s rainbow history. 28 August 1954 Teenagers Pauline Parker and Juliet Hulme were found guilty of murdering Parker’s mother with a brick in Victoria Park, Christchurch. The trial highlighted the girls’ fantasies and absorption with each other. Defence lawyers contended that the pair had...
From the early stages of homosexual law reform, successful gay panic murder defences to a ground-breaking yachtsman – Gareth Watkins examines the July dates that have shaped our queer community. 16 July 1925 A report titled Mental Defectives and Sexual Offenders was tabled in Parliament. According to Mr Hawkins, Inspector of...
Historian Gareth Watkins revisits significant dates in Aotearoa’s queer history. 11 April 1910 Artist Toss Woollaston was born in Stratford.  He would become one of New Zealand’s most widely known contemporary painters. In 1980 Woollaston published Sage Tea, a lyrical account of his early life. Writer Hugh Young says that...

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