2. Stonewall is the first LGBTQ+ National Monument

Secrets of the Stonewall Inn

When policemen raided Stonewall in the early hours of June 28, they did not realize a riot would ensue. As officers started to make arrests, few people cooperated. After escorting all outside of the bar, around 150 customers stayed rather than quickly dispersing. When a woman refused to enter the police wagon, one of the eight police officers on scene hit her in the head.

As chaos grew, the crowd increased to 600 people. Rioters threw pennies, beer bottles, and bricks at the police wagons and at Stonewall Inn. It was at this point that the policemen entered the bar for safety even though they had raided it only hours before. They had entered Stonewall to raid it only hours before, and once backup arrived, they freed the policemen.

In 2016, 47 years after the Stonewall Riots, Stonewall Inn became a National Monument. The Inn is now commemorated as the birthplace of the modern lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer civil rights movement. Before the riots, few felt safe coming out. However, when the brave Stonewall Inn customers rebelled against the police on July 28, 1969, they paved the way for other members of the LGBTQ+ community to follow in their footsteps. The 412th unit of the National Park System honors this courage.