Farewell To Giovanni’s Room

 

giovannis_citypaper

  • Giovanni’s Room, the iconic LBGT bookstore at 12th & Pine, will close its doors on Saturday. City Paper looks back at the legacy of the space, whose literature bolstered the ascendant Gay Rights and provided a haven and support structure during the early days of HIV. The market has certainly changed since Giovanni’s first opened in 1976. “There aren’t enough radically queer, unassimilated folks to sustain the place. But for some, at least, Giovanni’s Room has served until its end as Philly’s island of normalized otherness in a ‘Gayborhood’ now populated by artisanal gelato vendors and trend-chasing wine bars.”
  • The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has announced the closing of their Center City office at 900 Market Street, choosing instead to move their resources to the Federal Records Center in Northeast Philadelphia. This doesn’t sit well with the Independence Hall Association (IHA), who criticize the move to a location “totally inaccessible by public transportation, [where it will] severely limit these activities, potentially having a catastrophic impact on the success of the program – and the education of Philadelphia’s youth, who have already suffered at the hand of state budget cuts and teacher and staff layoffs.” IHA has created a petition to keep NARA’s Center City location open. View and sign it HERE.
About the author

Stephen Currall recently received his BA in history from Arcadia University. Before beginning doctoral studies, he is pursuing his interest in local history, specifically just how Philadelphians engage their vibrant past. Besides skimming through 18th century letters, Steve is also interested in music and travel.

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