LGBT History Materials

Nazi Persecution


In the fall of 2008, GSAFE partnered with the Memorial Library on the UW-Madison campus to host a traveling exhibition from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum entitled Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945.  GSAs and other student groups from all over Wisconsin came to Madison to tour the exhibition.

In conjunction with the exhibition, GSAFE worked with local historians and educators to create resources and lesson plans that teachers can use to incorporate LGBT history into the curriculum.  The materials below focus on LGBT history in the United States, Wisconsin, and Germany.

Note: We recognize that a lot has happened since 2008, and that the materials are now missing nearly a decade of progress!  We encourage you to continue using these resources and work with your students to fill in the timelines to bring them up to date.

Read GSAFE’s introduction to the history materials here.


U.S. LGBT History

With permission, GSAFE adapted materials created by PBS and GLSEN to go along with their documentary Out of the Past. Out of the Past tells the story of Kelli Peterson, a high school student in Utah who made national news when her Salt Lake City High School refused to allow her to start a GSA in the mid-90s.  The film pairs Kelli’s story with short lessons about LGBT history.

Read more about the film on the PBS website here.

Download the Timeline of LGBT History in the United States here.

Download suggested lesson plans for using the LGBT History timeline here.

Wisconsin LGBT History

Local historian Richard Wagner and retired school teacher Mary Mullen worked to create a timeline of LGBT history in Wisconsin and accompanying lesson plans.  Download the materials they created below:

Wisconsin LGBT History Timeline – Student Copy

Wisconsin LGBT History Timeline – Teacher Copy

Wisconsin LGBT History Teacher Lesson

Wisconsin LGBT History Timeline Guide

Wisconsin Timeline Record Sheet Student Copy

Wisconsin Timeline Record Sheet Teacher Copy

German LGBT History

Given that the exhibition focuses on the lives of gays and lesbians in Germany leading up to and during World War II, local scholar James Steakley created a timeline of German LGBT history for educators to use.  Download the materials he created below:

German LGBT History Timeline


If you would like Microsoft Word versions of any of these documents, please email Brian Juchems at




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“Without the knowledge, resources, and extra effort of GSAFE, I have no question that we would not have a Gay-Straight Alliance in our school.” – David Witte, Middle School Principal