Gerber/Hart Library and Archives was founded in 1981 on the belief that knowledge is key to dispelling homophobia and the marginalization of sexual and gender minorities. Focused primarily on the Midwest, Gerber/Hart has grown to become one of the larger independent LGBTQ libraries and archives, containing a 27,000 volume circulating library, 600 periodicals, 700 newsletters, 150 archive collections (980 linear feet), 1,700 linear feet of Special Collections items, and four exhibition venues.
Founded in 1981, Gerber/Hart Library and Archives seeks to preserve and make accessible the history and culture of the LGBTQ* communities in Chicago and the Midwest in order to advance the larger goal of achieving justice and equality.
Three core purposes define our work. We operate a lending library whose books illuminate the richly varied culture and experience of LGBTQ individuals and communities. We acquire, preserve, and make accessible an ever-growing archive that documents these histories. And we offer a broad range of educational programs that illustrate this history and culture through exhibits, lectures, panel discussions, and film screenings.
Open to everyone, Gerber/Hart is dedicated to promoting research, learning, exploration, and discovery in a safe and welcoming atmosphere that reflects the diversity of the communities that it serves.
*Gerber/Hart’s collections include non-LGBTQ materials of the culture and history of people and organizations marginalized by gender and sexuality for whom a library or archives collection has not been established in the Chicago metropolitan area.
Gerber/Hart believes that knowledge of LGBTQ history in all its diversity and complexity fosters understanding and constructive change in society. We envision a world in which justice, equality, respect, and inclusion describe how LGBTQ people and all members of society are treated.
Copies of our current bylaws are available upon request at firstname.lastname@example.org.