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June 2018 Trans Talk on KKFI


We have two special guests with us today. First we will be talking with a guest who has visited with us before, Professor Larry Altman, who will discuss the current status of several legal issues impacting the LGBTQIA community in Kansas and Missouri. Then at the bottom of the hour we will be discussing issues of spirituality with the Reverend Seth Sonneville, a hospital chaplain who has worked with the transgender community for some time.

We will have a new take on the transgender news of the month, and finish up the show with the community calendar update. I do hope you will be able to join me this Saturday, June 23rd at 1:00 pm on 90.1 KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org, or via various apps on your phone.

May 2018 Trans Talk on KKFI

This week’s show is going to focus on music. With us in the studio, we will have Bailey Larkin, a local trans woman who performs solo as Bailey Larkin, and in the queer indie punk group, eggdropsoup. We’ll be talking to her and the other members of of eggdropsoup about their lives, music and inspiration.

We will also be talking to Anthony Stembrite about their music, life and inspiration as well as introducing him to listeners as a regular Trans Talk host.

We will have a new take on the transgender news of the month, and finish up the show with the community calendar update. I do hope you will be able to join me this Saturday, May 26th at 1:00 pm on 90.1 KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org, or via various apps on your phone.

An Opportunity to Participate in Research on Transgender Parents

Hello everyone,

A Ph.D candidate in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice at the University of Delaware contacted us directly, and asked us to help get the word out to folks from age 18-25 to participate in a survey about transgender parents.

Being the daughter of a transgender parent herself, the researcher is looking for folks who:

  • Are between age 18-25.
  • Have a transgender parent who stayed with their partner through transition.
  • And learned about their parent’s transition when they were at least 10 years old.

People who participate in the survey will receive a $10 Amazon gift card for their time.

The flyer is linked below, but in case you have trouble reading the PDF file, the contact information is:

Andrea D. Kelley
Mail: adkelley@udel.edu
Call or Text: 610-350-6844

Note: we at Transas City receive absolutely no compensation nor benefit from publicizing this survey.

Click here to see the recruitment flyer.

March 2018 Trans Talk on KKFI


We have another full house today on Trans Talk. We are going to kick off the program by talking with Cassandra Peters, who is the founder of the Johnson County Q-Space, the only LGBTQ+ youth center in Johnson County, Kansas. Joining Cassandra in the studio today are some of the kids from the Q-Space.

In the second part of the program we have in our studio Marissa Wolf, who is the director of new works and the associate artistic director of Kansas City Repertory Theatre. Ms. Wolf is here on Trans Talk to share the details of an upcoming new play reading titled “CLICK” by Jaqueline Goldfinger, which features a transgender character.

We will have a new take on the transgender news of the month, and finish up the show with the community calendar update. I do hope you will be able to join me this Saturday, March 24th at 1:00 pm on 90.1 KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org, or via various apps on your phone.

Book Reviews – Myra Breckinridge and Myron

I’ve posted a detailed summary and review of two works by Gore Vidal from more than 40 years ago: Myra Breckinridge (1968) and its sequel, Myron (1974). Transgender historians may be interested in reading my reviews, but to summarize for anyone who is not that interested, both books are transphobic, exploitive, ignorant, and sometimes disgusting pieces of crap that should be gathered together in one place and sunk to the bottom of the Challenger Deep. The only purpose served by the books is as a warning of how even highly educated progressives can be giant tools when it comes to trying to give us the basic human right of dignity, let alone trying to understand us.

Sir Lady Java, Transgender Woman of Color


I’ve added a little bit of new history to Transas City this last week. A new page featuring transgender pioneer Sir Lady Java has been posted, and the first four scans on the page are from my private collection of transgender history (as always, please copy/steal the scans I make of my historical items, so everyone can keep our history safe).

Sir Lady Java has had many roles in our transgender history, and she is remembered as being an openly transgender exotic dancer, comedian, singer, actress, and civil rights activist. She is likely most famous for fighting Los Angeles’ anti-crossdressing law, known as “Rule No. 9,” which for decades was used by the police to harass, intimidate, and imprison transgender and crossdressing persons.

Please take a minute to view a few of the images I have collected, and read a little about her history.

Sir Lady Java

Joanna Clark: Warrior Woman


We’ve added a new page on Transas City to highlight a very small part of the history and accomplishments of Joanna Clark, who we interviewed on Trans Talk in November 2017. Ms. Clark is in some ways the founder of the current fight for transgender military service, and she was a major activist in the fight against HIV/AIDS in the 1990’s.

On her page you can listen to a 1-hour interview we had with Ms. Clark, see a couple of old photographs of her (including a high-resolution scan of one I bought recently), and read a newspaper article from 1977 about her fight for recognition and equality.

New Collection Added to Transas City – Female Mimics International

Female Mimics International magazine was a later evolution than Female Mimics magazine, and as such (at least among the issues from the 1980’s that are hosted here), it focuses on drag and crossdressing culture, with some transgender-focused topics. These magazines have a much more prurient and exploitative bent than earlier magazines. Nonetheless, the magazine is quite interesting for its coverage of crossdressing-related events of the 1980’s, which often were a refuge for the transgender community at the time, as well as the larger LGB community.

I have 53 issues of the magazine featured on this page. Please note before clicking, some of the covers (not to mention the interiors of the magazines) are not work-safe.

Rare Transgender History from World War I


Every now and then I find a truly unique piece of transgender history that I have never seen nor even heard of existing anywhere else. This is a highly unusual item, and if you have any interest in transgender history please take a minute to view it.

Today I am featuring a new addition – a full-page article from the French Le Regiment, from Thursday, May 23, 1918. Le Regiment was advertised at this time as a “humorous magazine for the troops,” along the lines of a much more amusing Stars and Stripes.

On page 5 of the magazine there is a stunning full-page portrayal of either a transgender woman or a gender non-conforming person, who is not named but said to be a US sailor (and indeed, appears in uniform). They’re shown in three photographs, two presenting as a woman, and one in their male naval dress.

I have a very high-resolution scan of the page available for you to view and download – and remember, as with all historical resources on Transas City, feel free to download and share the resources. I never watermark, put logos on, or try to keep people from downloading them. This is our history, and I will not monetize our history to make a profit off of our community.

You can find the photographs by this direct link.

Added to Transas City: Female Mimics Magazine


Female Mimics magazine has evolved over its publication. When the first issue was released in 1963, the magazine covered transgender, crossdressers, and gender non-conforming persons from a standpoint that I would describe as somewhat admiring, somewhat intrigued, and somewhat fetishization. The early issues are peppered with stars from transgender history, such as Christine Jorgensen, Bambi, Shalimar, and Coccinelle. Also featured are clubs and venues where transgender persons may be found, such as Chez Madame Arthur and the Jewel Box Revue. Click here for a quick link to the collection.

The magazine is most interesting to me because it highlighted many transgender persons and clubs that I had never even heard of in passing, which has given me new avenues for research and cataloging. A task which will never end. But also note that magazines such as these gave hope to thousands of closeted transgender persons, who could read and live vicariously through the photos and stories contained within their pages. They also provided guides for where isolated and lonely transgender persons could meet others just like themselves.

In later issues the magazine turns to more of a fetishist bent, but I’ve still decided to host all the ones I have copies of. I own no paper copies of these except for the premiere issue, which I hope to scan in very high resolution soon. The rest of these came from the Digital Transgender Archive, of which Transas City is a part.

Necessary Changes to Transas City

As I’ve been updating the site with more of my archival materials (I still have less than a third posted so far), I’ve had to also make some necessary changes in the site.

When the site first started in 2012, there was a dearth of transgender information available locally to our community on how to transition legally in Kansas and Missouri. To help folks out with the legal aspects of transition, I consulted a local attorney and received information from transgender persons who had gone through the transition process, including my own experiences in Kansas, and I created the Kansas and Missouri transition pages. Which helped numerous people over the years.

Unfortunately, time passed and the information on the site became stale. I sought out legal help again from 3 different attorneys who frequently work with transgender persons in the KCMO area, and all three refused to help me in any way. Even when I asked for just general guidelines and how-to’s, they either said they didn’t want to get involved, or in one case said “why should I post information on your site that will make me lose business, Una?” I guess I have to credit her mercenary honesty.

I made a second effort this last fall to get updated information, but was unable to find a single attorney or paralegal willing to donate even a couple of hours of time to help me. While several persons who had gone through the process recently were kind enough to offer their help, what I needed was a more authoritative legal guideline that was more generic.

Thus, in the interest of only providing accurate information, I have been forced to remove the pages.

There will be continued reorganization and updating of the site in the coming months, which will move the focus more towards community history, science, social, and ethnic resources for us. The site receives between 300-800 hits every day from humans (meaning, non-bots or web crawlers), and can top 10,000 in a day when a newsworthy article is posted. Clearly the information here is valued by some, and I’m going to continue to focus on my strengths.

Please note too that if you have an idea for something to host on the site, please contact me at transascity@gmail.com. Also, if you have any sort of trans-focused event you want publicized, send that to us and not only can we post about it here, but we can tell folks about it on the radio for free.

Zelma Rawlston, Drag King from the 1800’s

I’ve added two photos of a new addition to Transas City: Zelma Rawlston, who played the role of a “swell young man” in many plays and productions. Her image in male dress caught the imagination of audiences in the 1890’s-1910’s, and she appeared on music sheets, playbills, and in many magazines and newspapers. One of the photos, showing her in 1897, is an original document that I acquired and which has now entered the Transas City collection.

Based upon historical evidence it’s most likely that Zelma was gender non-conforming, rather than being transgender. But as we know, gender non-conformity is a vital part of the overall transgender awareness and experience throughout society, and many gender non-conforming persons are valued and cherished for their bravery via their public presence.

Click this link to visit the new Zelma Rawlston page on Transas City. 

A 247-Year-Old Addition to Transas City: The Chevalier D’Eon

Several weeks ago I posted photos from the incredibly rare book from 1771 that I purchased in England. The book featured a unique story about the Chevalier D’Eon, a famous transgender person who lived from 1728-1810, and and how they underwent an examination by a jury of noblewomen to “prove” whether their physical sex was male or female. I’ll provide a spoiler and say that the result was “epicene,” which means “having characteristics of both sexes, or being of indeterminate sex.”

The Chevalier D’Eon and their incredible story has influenced transgender research and history even into the mid-20th century, with the Chevalier even being mentioned during the recent production of Casa Valentina.

I’ve finally made the high-resolution scans available; it took more time than I thought because scanning a 247-year-old book without breaking the spine is tricky. I have a page set up now with a brief introduction, the frontispiece of the book, the woodcut of the Chevalier, and the two pages of text scanned in high resolution. As usual, there are no watermarks, no alterations, and no copyrights. Please download and take these images to keep them safe!

The Updates are Starting: A Very Special Christine

Hello everyone, the updates are returning. I’ve been very ill for some time, but I’ve also been steadily ferreting out and collecting rare transgender history to share with you all. I have several items scanned and processed to share with you all, but I’m going to kick off this series with a very special photograph of Christine Jorgensen. It’s one of my favorites, despite the poor condition of the photograph in the lower left-hand corner. I like this photograph because it’s autographed, she’s happy, and it’s not a press photograph or reprint – this is an actual private photograph she took with “Frank,” whom I have not been able to identify. The signature reads “To Frank – Thank you for letting me join your Harem. Christine.” Please click on the link below the image to see the high-resolution scan.

High-resolution version.

You can find more Christine Jorgensen photographs and media on our Christine Jorgensen page.

December 2017 Trans Talk on KKFI


We have a very artistic episode of this month’s Trans Talk Edition of the Tenth Voice! We’re going to kick off the program with a special on the opera “As One.” Composed by Laura Kaminsky, with a libretto by Mark Campbell and Kimberly Reed, As One is a coming-of-age story about a transgender woman, and inspired by the real-life transition of Ms. Reed herself. Laura, Mark, and Kimberly will be joining us by phone, and in the studio with us is Linda Brand, the Director of Education and Community Engagement for the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, which will be presenting the opera.

After the break we will be joined here live in the studio by the Transfinity KC Transgender Chorus, who are going to sing and play some music and help us share some holiday cheer with us all. We’ll talk to them about their 2017 performance year, and their plans for the upcoming 2018 season.

We will have a new take on the transgender news of the month, and we will finish up the show with the community calendar update. I do hope you will be able to join me this Saturday, December 23rd at 1:00 pm on 90.1 KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org, or via various apps on your phone.