I recently acquired a set of five original photographs of Christine Jorgensen, the first “mass media” transgender woman in the world. Four of the photos date from 1953, and one which is autographed by her from between 1957-1962.
I’m going to post one new photo a day this week. Each photo can be found on the Christine Jorgensen page here, and if you click on the photos here and on her page, you can download a very high-resolution version of the work. As always, I never watermark, limit the resolution, or deliberately try to pervert the images, like many other transgender history sites.
Soon after Christine arrived back in America, she was given a very prestigious award by the Scandinavian Societies of Greater New York, where she was made “Woman of the Year.”
The following photograph is labeled March 7, 1953, and has a caption on the reverse which reads in part:
Christine named “Woman of the Year” New York……….. Golden-haired Christine Jorgensen, the former GI transformed into a beautiful woman by Copenhagen (Denmark) surgeons and physicians, is shown this evening as she received the Scandinavian Societies of Greater New York “Woman of the Year” award from the Society’s chairman, Harry Berglind, at the 20th annual concert and ball. Attired attractively in a white evening gown with all the trimmings, Christine made her first public appearance as a woman tonight.
You can click on the photo below to download or view a very high-resolution image.
We have a special guest to kick our show off – Christine Burns will be joining us from the UK to discuss her decades-long work for transgender rights, as well as her work as a transgender historian. Ms Burns was instrumental in using the early internet for transgender advocacy, worked with the early political group Press for Change for transgender rights, and also helped craft the UK’s Gender Recognition Act of 2004 – for which she was awarded an MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.)
We have two other special guests for the second half of our show – Grace Cox-Johnson and Johnalita White-Menscher will be joining us to talk about the first year of Transfinity KC, Kansas City’s transgender and allies chorus. We will discuss the performances of the chorus in its first year, and will talk tell us the plans for the upcoming year, as well as information on how you can join and make your voice heard.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, February 25 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
Hello everyone! We have two themes to our program this week. First we are going to re-open the subject of transgender prisoners, focusing on what happens afterwards and how society has placed many barriers on success for transgender persons who have served their time and are fighting to live their lives in America. We will be talking with JoAnna Ramsey, a guest we interviewed last October, to check up on her and find out how she has been doing getting her life in order. Also with us is April, a transgender woman and activist who is also trying to get a fresh start after a history of legal difficulties. In our second half we will interview Ari Copeland, a transgender man who is a senior water scientist at a global engineering firm, to talk about his life and to discuss along with Una the perils and joys of crossing the gender barrier in the corporate engineering world.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, January 28 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
I’ve added a very rare photograph to the collection – I found this this one on the second floor of the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas, in a photo gallery of scores of Las Vegas alumni. It was a very dramatic moment for me actually – I was going to a client reception hosted by my company as “out and proud” myself, when I exited the escalator and suddenly was face-to-face with this gorgeous photo print. I just stopped cold, and stared…and stared…I think it was nearly 5 minutes that I spent, just standing there looking into the past of my people. After the event, when I had had far too much to drink, apparently I spent some more time in front of the work, until hotel security asked me if I was alright, and helped me to a taxi.
The photo print is nearly 4 feet high, and has glorious detail, but sadly it is not very well-lit, and the photograph was spoiled by reflections from overhead lamps that I could not block out. I have a small version above, and a link to a much larger version right here.
There was a small silver plaque to the right of the photo, which said in full “December 9, 1955. Entertainer Christine Jorgensen performs on stage at the Silver Slipper.” And note this very important bit – they only refer to her as an “entertainer,” not “transgender woman” or anything else. I think that is really very incredible in a mundane, normal way.
More photos, media, and information about Jorgensen can be found on our Christine Jorgensen page.
Hello everyone! Today’s show has a special holiday theme, being a friends and family show. First we will be speaking with Samantha Ruggles about her life, challenges, and successes as a transgender woman. Samantha is a friend of ours who is the final guest in our Transgender Kaleidoscope series of 2016. Next, Fiona will lead a discussion about family and the holidays with Samantha and our other dear friends in the studio with us today: Marsha, Suzanne, Gus, and Finn.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, December 24 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
I’m starting the processing of hundreds of archival transgender media, which I’m providing in high-resolution scans and with no watermarks. So let’s begin with this: in the April, 1967 edition of Uncensored magazine, we find an article which purports how Christine Jorgensen is doing in life as a woman, and reports on Johns Hopkins Hospital starting sex reassignment surgery (SRS) and establishing their Gender Identity Clinic. The article features several photographs from Christine Jorgensen’s past, but mainly focuses on the recent history of SRS (well, recent in 1967 anyhow), with some interesting facts and figures.
There is a quote from Jorgensen at the end of the article, referencing the Johns Hopkins programs, where she says: “I am glad I lived to see it happen. The biggest problem I have encountered since my operation is disbelief. Some people refer to me as ‘it.’ This is a smart-alec approach to a serious medical problem. I have received thousands of letters from people who don’t know where to turn. Now at least some of these poor souls have a place to go.”
You may read and download the entire article, scanned in high-resolution, either by going to the Transas City Christine Jorgensen page, or directly from this link here.
It’s been a while since I’ve posted about things not concerning KKFI and Trans Talk. It’s not been a good year for us here at Transas City, not at all. But the election…debacle has convinced me that I need to get the energy to rejuvenate Transas City, and get my hundreds of backlogged historical and science items out in the public.
But first I wanted to highlight a current television advertisement from Denmark – inarguably the home of Western transsexual history – showing a father trying to reach out to his transgender daughter at Christmas time. The advertisement is for Danish electronics retailer Elgiganten, and is titled (after translation) “Let the Gifts Talk.” The advertisement shows a transgender teenager or woman spending a tense Christmas with her parents, obviously scared and uncomfortable.
The entire family seems tense as her father grimly presents her with a gift, that as she hesitantly opens turns out to be a hair straightener/curler set. There’s a shy smile from her, and an almost-smile from the still grim father.
Some have criticized the advertisement for the father not showing “enough” acceptance, not being as friendly and welcoming to his daughter as he should be. But in my experience, as I’m certain that of innumerable others, acceptance and welcoming are such a gradual process, and every family works on their own timetable. Sometimes it goes in fits and starts – the old “two steps forward, one step backward.” But other times, it is just a very slow, gradual evolution, like ice melting. The latter is what I believe this advertisement is showing.
You can view the advertisement below via YouTube.
Hello everyone! We have two guests for our show this weekend – first, we will be speaking with Julie, the mother of a transgender young man, who is suing the Odessa Missouri school district over discrimination against her son. Next, we will be talking with Dr. Peter Raphael, a surgeon with the American Institute of Plastic Surgery who serves the transgender male and female community, about his practice and developments in transgender surgery.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, November 26 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
Hello everyone! We are devoting the entire show this month to a special guest and those who are supporting her. JoAnna Ramsey is a transgender woman who experienced a harrowing time incarcerated in Kansas within the male prison population, and she will be speaking with us about herself, what she went through in prison, and her transgender activism behind the wall. Also with us will be Caroline Gibbs, founder of the Transgender Institute of Kansas City, who will discuss how the Institute worked to help JoAnna, as well as plans for a future outreach project for transgender prisoners. JoAnna is also joined by her friend Tyga McHenry, who will talk with us about JoAnna’s experience.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, October 22 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
Hello everyone! We begin this month’s Trans Talk edition of the Tenth Voice speaking with Haley Bridges, the Director of TrueGender, which is a new local organization working to tackle the problem of high medical costs for transgender families. Next we will continue our Transgender Kaleidoscope series, speaking with Carmen Xavier, a transgender woman with a wonderful outlook on life and local political aspirations to help the community.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, September 24 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
Hello everyone! We begin this month’s Trans Talk edition of the Tenth Voice speaking with Dr. Courtney Marsh, a Reproductive Specialist at The University Of Kansas Hospital who provides hormone therapy to many of the Kansas City transgender community. Dr Marsh will be answering questions about hormone therapy and other transgender medical issues. For the second half of our program we continue our Transgender Kaleidoscope series, and this time we’re highlighting not just one individual, but an entire family of hope: Libby, a transgender woman who has just finished high school, and her father Michael, mother Louise, and fiancé Eliza – who also happens to be a transgender woman.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, August 27 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
…and lesbian farmers, of course.
Really, the jokes just write themselves, as we learn from Media Matters of conservative angst over the The Iowa LGBT Rural Summit, which was held on August 18. The purpose of the summit is to elevate voices in rural LGBT communities and share information for politics, programs, and services to protect and strengthen them. This innovative program was quickly viewed as a plot to infiltrate the heartlands with “radical LGBT propaganda,” for evil purposes of course. For example, according to the Washington Free Beacon,
“The all-day summit will teach lesbian and transgender hillbillies how to get subsidies from the government like rural housing loans and “community facility grants.” Bullying will also be discussed.”
Noted transphobe, homophobe…shoot, is there anyone this guy likes?…Rush Limbaugh weighed in on this issue, braying on his August 17th show:
Have you heard the latest Democrat scam? Have you heard about the Agriculture Department’s financial grants to lesbian farmers? You think I’m making this up?
I’m like you; I never before in my life knew that lesbians wanted to be farmers. I never knew that lesbians wanted to get behind the horse and the plow and start burrowing[sic]. I never knew it. But apparently enough money can make make it happen, and the objective here is to attack — they’re already attacking suburbs, and that has been made perfectly clear by what happened in Milwaukee. And they’re going after every geographic region that is known to be largely conservative. They never stop, folks. They are constantly on the march.
While most of the criticism in the right-wing media focuses on lesbians, there is plenty of fear and loathing over the slow realization that transgender people not only exist, but yes, sometimes we do actually farm.
Transgender persons are often told that their gender identity and presentation are forbidden by the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. Insults are hurled, jobs are lost, and discriminatory laws crafted based upon this belief. But is this really accurate? Does research into the linguistic origins and the historical context of the Bible suggest that rather than being condemned, transgender persons may actually be accepted within the texts?
This lecture is intended for peoples of all faiths or no specific faith as a way to help understand how different interpretations of religious texts can yield significant differences in the meaning of the text – and how to respond to some religious-based arguments against the validity of transgender identity.
Please join Una Nowling, Director of Transgender Studies at the Transgender Institute, hostess of “Trans Talk” on 90.1 FM KKFI, and the founder of Transas City, as she presents her research on a positive relationship between transgender persons and the Bible.
Johnson County Central Library, 9875 W. 87th Street, Overland Park, KS 66212 – Carmack Community Room
Date and Time
3:00 – 4:15 pm, Sunday, July 31st
There is no cost to attend, although donations will be accepted for transgender persons in need in the Kansas City metropolitan area.
Hello everyone! We have two special guests this month on Trans Talk. Earlier this year, we started a series called Transgender Kaleidoscope, where we highlight interesting transgender individuals from the local Kansas City Metropolitan community. We skipped that session last month due to having two time-sensitive topics to air, so today, we’re going to have two Kaleidoscope guests. Our first guest will be Grace Cox-Johnson, a transgender woman who has a passion for music, and who acts as music director at Transfinity KC, Kansas City’s own transgender chorus. Our second guest will be Gus, a transgender man who has been an educator, mentor, and voice in the community, and who is here to share his own story with us. While Gus has been through many challenges in his life, but in the end one of his greatest feelings of accomplishment is in finally being just a “normal guy” and living an authentic life.
As usual, we will share with you the transgender news and the community calendar update. We do hope you will be able to join us this Saturday, July 23 at 1:00 pm on 90.1 FM KKFI, Kansas City Community Radio! You can also stream the program live on kkfi.org.
On July 28, 2016 a free event will be held to provide advice and demonstrations for creating a feminine appearance that fits your style. Called An Evening of Beauty and Transformation for Trans Women in the Midwest, the event will be an opportunity to mingle with complimentary refreshments and live music, while learning from representatives such as:
Wig Design – Robinn Scholfield
Vocal Feminization – Caroline Gibbs
Fashion, Image Consulting, and Skin Care – Anna Mc Connell
Makeup Artistry – Monique Brown
Master Hair Stylist – Alonda Lona
Laser Hair Removal – Mirabile Medcosmetic
I’ve been to these events before, and they are always well-attended and thus provide an opportunity to meet many other transgender folks from the Kansas City Area. I hope to see you there!
Date and Time
6.00 to 8.30 pm, July 28, 2016.
Bravadas Wig Design Boutique, 11004 Metcalf Avenue, Overland Park, KS, 66210