New and Venerable Institutions: Wedstock

Phyllis Lyon (79) and Del Martin (83), a couple of 51 years, are seen here at the Gay Community Center on Market Street, where they endorsed Gavin Newsom for mayor on November 13, 2003.

Wedstock: Longtime couple and pioneers of the gay rights movement, Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin were married at San Francisco City Hall by City Assessor Mabel Teng in an event orchestrated by Mayor Gavin Newsom as a legal challenge to the right wing on the issue of gay marriage. The historic wedding took place before noon on Thursday, February 12, 2004. Lyon and Martin are the first gay couple to be officially married in the USA. They founded a then eight-members strong lesbian organization, the Daughters of Bilitis, in 1955.

(By 5:30 on the memorable day, when I left the scene, 52 gay couples had been married at City Hall and dozens more were issued marriage licenses. The next morning, various media reported that 87-95 gay couples were married on the 12th. Hundreds of couples followed suit as the event, a true San Francisco happening, continued throughout the weekend and, ultimately, through March 11. - HD)

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Detail VI: Mister SF becomes a Wedstock groom!

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