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What about the seahorse? I came out in 1975 at age 19. One of the first bits of “old” Lesbian trivia I learned about and personally saw was middle-aged and old Lesbians wearing seahorse necklaces or earrings or with seahorse tattoos. I was told this was a common Lesbian symbol from the 50’s and 60’s (possibly earlier – not sure how far it went back) and that the seahorse had been adopted for the gender-bending nature it symbolized. It was not a tradition with my younger post-Stonewall generation – we wore lambdas, labryses, or double-women symbols. I distinctly remember the women that wore seahorses as being middle aged or old, a little rough around the edges and “butch.” They told horrifying stories of personally experiencing bar raids in the Gay & Lesbian bars in Toledo – until only a few years earlier – and people being arrested just for being LGBT. In fact there was an old Lesbian bar in Toledo called “The Seahorse” – which had a history of having been raided. This was something already incomprehensible to those of us who came out in the mid-70s. I remember being shocked because I had just come out and it was the first time I had heard of the practice. I’m not sure if the seahorse symbol was a Midwestern thing or found across the US. Or perhaps it was localized to Toledo (and other port cities) since Toledo was an international port city on Lake Erie?? Or maybe it was associated with port cities? I say this because I just googled it and the only info I could find was on in which someone from Baltimore posted:
With the advent of spam in newsgroups, writers of transgender fiction began founding electronic mailing lists and websites to share material while avoiding unwelcome spammers. In 1996, Mindy Rich created the "Maniapages" listserve and expanded the concept from gender transformation stories to any fiction exploring gender. In late 1997, Rich laid the groundwork to transform Maniapages from a listserve into a website, officially launching Fictionmania in February 1998. The number of archived stories quickly exploded from hundreds to thousands.