TABLE OF CONTENTS


Overview of the Collection

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents

Arrangement

Restrictions

Related Material

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1 – GMSMA Programs and History

Series 2 – Board of Directors Minutes and Correspondence

Series 3 – Committee Minutes and Correspondence

Series 4 – Events

Series 5 – Legal and Law cases

Series 6 - Photography

Series 7 – Audio Visual Media,

Series 8 – Artifacts

Finding Aid to the Gay-Male-S/M Activists (GMSMA), Inc. Records



Overview of the Collection

Repository: Leather Archives & Museum 6418 N. Greenview Ave Chicago, IL 60626
Creator: Gay-Male-S/M Activists (GMSMA), Inc. and Gil Kessler, Archivist
Title: Gay-Male-S/M Activists (GMSMA), Inc. Records
Dates: 1980 – 2009
Quantity: 9.5 linear feet
Abstract:
Identification: ORG0005
Language: The records are in english.

Biographical Note

Impetus for the organization was a letter that appeared in Boston’s “Gay Community News” in August of 1980. The letter drew together a core group of six men who met at the end of August. The group grew by word of mouth. The group formed as Gay-Male-S/M Activists (GMSMA) in early 1981 and marched behind a banner at the June 28, 1981 Gay Pride March in New York. The organization defined itself not as a private sex club, but as an organization with an open door policy. GMSMA was intended to be inclusive rather than exclusive, not an elite group but a broad-based organization.

The first meeting of the organization was held in August, 1980. The first steering committee of the organization was held in May of 1981 and the first board meeting was held in March of 1983. The mission of the organization was: "We are a group of gay males interested and involved in ‘s/m’ who meet regularly for purposes of discussion, learning, support, and the establishment of a positive presence in the gay community.”

The organization was incorporated as GMSMA, Inc. and was located in the City, County and State of New York. The organization was run by a steering committee from 1981 to 1983 and a Board of Directors from 1983 forward. The Board was empowered to create both Standing and Ad Hoc committees. The officers of the organization consisted of a Chairman of the Board, a President, one or more Vice Presidents, an Executive Secretary, a Membership Secretary, a Treasurer, and such other officers as may be appointed by or designated by the Board. The Bylaws of the organization outlined the powers and duties of the Chairman of the Board, the President, the Vice President(s), the Executive Secretary, the Membership Secretary and the Treasurer.

GMSMA’s programs and activities included educational, social, networking and fundraising events. The program committee planned and executed educational workshops on S/M and bondage technique as well as presentations on leather and fetish culture and history. For many years, the organization presented workshops and other programs at the NYC LGBT Community Center. GMSMA’s Speakers Bureau was invited to present at colleges and at events of other organizations. GMSMA organized several large scale events throughout its history including Folsom Street East, the Gotham Leatherman Contest, Leather Pride Night (in collaboration with other New York organizations), LeatherFest and a Leather / SM / Fetish Celebration in NYC in 1994. The organization also played a key role in the development of the first Leather Leadership Conference, held in NYC in 2000. GMSMA published a newsletter entitled “NewsLink” from 1982 to 2005. The organization formed the “Hocutt-Ferguson PWA (People With AIDS) Assistance Fund in 1998 and gave out 68 grants totaling over $31,000.

Presidents and Chairmen of the organization throughout the years included Ray Matienzo, Richard Hocutt, David Stein, Geoff Ferguson, Gil Kessler, Ted Heaney, Michael Horowitz, Barry Douglas, David Weinbaum, Richard Canter, Bruce Marcus, Philip Douglas, John Weis, Philip Williams, Bob Pesce, Thom Saporita, Peter Boruchowitz, Andrew Harwin, Drew Kramer, Walt Weiss, Ray Warman, Daniel Kitchen, Grant Anderson, Rico Mendiola and Devin MacLachlan.

At the April 30, 2009 meeting of the organization, the Board of Directors resolved to dissolve GMSMA and transition the organization into Folsom Street East, Inc. The final meeting of GMSMA was held on October 19, 2009 at East of Eighth restaurant and bar. The Novices SIG and the annual Folsom Street East street parade continues as of the date of publication for this finding aid.

Sources:

Gay-Male-S/M Activists by David Stien. Bunkhouse 1981 pp. 17-19
A brief history of GMSMA, from Gil Kessler, Archivist by Gil Kessler. April 2010, GMSMA collection
By-Laws of the organization, 1982 – 2001, GMSMA collection
Board of Directors listing, GMSMA collection

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Scope and Contents

The GMSMA Records are largely the collection of records, images and artifacts from Gil Kessler, who served as archivist for the organization throughout much of its life. The records document the early movement of the organization through articles and meeting minutes. The educational programming of GMSMA is documented through flyers and pamphlets produced to advertise the programs and handouts from the programs. The comprehensive minutes from the Board of Directors and committee meetings document that business of the organization. Board of Directors and member correspondence files document the successes and struggles of the organization. The slide and photograph images and audio and film files included in the collection document the members, activities and programs of the organization.

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Arrangement

Materials have been retained in the order they were received by the organization, within each series. Within each subsection of the collection, papers were largely kept in chronological order.

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Restrictions

Restrictions on Use

Photographic images may not be republished without written permission of GMSMA President and Chairman until the year 2057 for as long as the organization is incorporated. Photographic images republished prior to 2057 must include copyright clearance from the photographer.

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Related Material

Separated Material

Posters:
Folsom Street East II (1998)
New York Leather Weekend 1993 (2 copies)
Folsom Street East 2002 (4 copies)
Folsom Street East 2000 (2 copies)
Folsom Street East 5 2001 (4 copies)
Folsom Street East 1999 (2 copies)

GMSMA News / GMSMA Newslink moved to magazine collection – 66 issues
Drawing by Pat Daley (Tasso / GMSMA shirt) moved to art collection
Black cotton and poly t-shirt size XL Folsom Street East moved to fibers collection (2 copies)
1 plastic March on Washington gay pride flag
2 fiber leather pride flags, removed from collection

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Detailed Description of the Collection

Box Nos. Folder Nos.
Series 1 – GMSMA Programs and History
Papers in this series were mostly culled from 3 ring binders and placed in folders. The folder labels indicate the description noted on the binder from which their contents were removed. The series also includes official GMSMA documents including incorporation papers, insurance documents, and papers related to the formation of Folsom Street East. Program fliers, photocopies of news articles, program books and informational handouts make up the majority of this series. Of note to researchers is a copy of David Stein's article "Gay-Male-S/M Activists" which appeared in the August 1981 issue of Bunkhouse Magazine. The original newspaper ad from Brian O'Dell that appeared in Boston's "Gay Community News" is also included.
1 1 Official GMSMA Documents including incorporation, insurance, Folsom Street East
2 Binder 1 / Forms, letterhead, brochures, membership cards
3 Binder 1 / Blank membership applications (1985 – 2004)
4 Binder 1 / 1982, 1983, 1984, Board of Directors listings, original newspaper ad, GMSMA history, David Stein 1981 Bunkhouse article, 1981 - 1984
5 Binder 1, 1984 - 1987
6 Loose records and certificates removed from frames
7 Binder A / All Program Schedules
2 8 Binder 2, 1988 - 1989
9 Binder 2, 1990
10 Binder 3, 1991
11 Binder 3, 1992
12 Binder 4, 1993
13 Binder 4, 1994
14 Binder 4, 1995
3 15 Binder 5, 1996
16 Binder 5, 1997
17 Binder 5, 1998
18 Binder 5, 1999
19 Binder 6, 2000
20 Binder 7, 2001
21 Binder 7, 2002
22 Binder 7, 2003
23 Binder 7, 2004
24 Binder 7, 2005
4 25 Binder 7, 2006
26 Binder 7, 2007
27 Binder 7, 2008
28 Binder 7, 2009
Series 2 – Board of Directors Minutes and Correspondence
Papers in this series include minutes from Board meetings and retreats. Many program meetings are also incorporated into the early board meeting minutes. A timeline of Board officers and full listing of Board Members is also included in this series. Minutes from organizing meetings (prior to the development of the steering committee) are also included. Notable correspondence includes letters from Larry Townsend, a letter to the editor of The Village Voice, Mark I. Chester, Wally Wallace (as owner of The Mineshaft), Mark Thompson (as Cultural Editor of "The Advocate"), John Preston, Jack Fritscher, Thom Gunn, Tom of Finland, Jo Arnone, Pat Califia and Steve Maidhof (as President of the National Leather Association)
4 29 Board of Directors: Minutes 1 (incl. Board meetings at retreats and many program meetings for first years, as every other meeting was “business”),
30 Board of Directors: Minutes 2, 1983 - 1988
31 Board of Directors: Minutes 3, 1989 - 1991
32 Board of Directors: Minutes 4, 1992 - 1995
33 Board of Directors: Minutes 5, 1996 - 2003
5 34 Board of Directors: Minutes 6 and Board Members Chart, 2004 - 2009
35 Board: Retreats 1, 1982 - 1991
36 Board: Retreats 2, 1993 - 2003
37 Board: Retreats 3, 2004 - 2008
38 Board: Correspondence 1, 1981 - 1984
39 Board: Correspondence 2, 1985 - 1988
40 Board: Correspondence 3, 1989 - 1990
41 Board: Correspondence 4, 1991 - 1995
6 42 Board: Correspondence 5, 1996 - 2003
43 Board: Correspondence 6, 2004 - 2009
44 Board: Miscellaneous
Series 3 – Committee Minutes and Correspondence
Records in this series include bylaws documentation, executive committee, community involvement committee, education committee, SIGs (Special Interest Groups), Finance committee, media policy committee, inreach / outreach committee, growth and diversity committee, fundraising committee, membership committee, program committee, public relations committee, PWA (persons with AIDS) outreach committee, publications committee, special events committee, web committee, and trademark committee.
6 45 Bylaws development; resolutions
46 Executive committee
47 Committee materials 1 (overlapping many committees)
48 Committee materials 2 (overlapping many committees)
49 Community involvement committee: Minutes 1984 – 2003 (also PR committee 1992 – 1993), 1984 - 2003
50 Community involvement committee: Correspondence, articles, misc 1
7 51 Community involvement committee: Correspondence, articles, misc 2
52 Community involvement committee: “News Notes” and “Did You See?”, 1983 - 1992
53 Community involvement committee: Speakers Bureau
54 Education committee: Minutes 1
55 Education committee: Minutes 2, 2004 - 2008
56 Education: SIGs
57 Education: Seminars / Workshops, 2005
8 58 Finance: Budget reports 1, 1981 – 1991
59 Finance: Budget reports 2, 1991 – 2004
60 Finance: Budget reports 3, 2004 Jul – 2009 Oct
61 Finance: Minutes
62 Media policy committee
63 Inreach / Outreach committee
64 Growth & diversity committee
65 Fundraising committee
66 Membership committee: Minutes and related items 1, 1989 – 2002
67 Membership committee: Minutes and related items 2
9 68 Membership committee: Surveys & Misc forms
69 Membership committee: Letters to membership, 1981 – 2003
70 Membership committee: Letters to membership, 2004 –
71 Membership committee: Letters to membership Summary of awards given, 2004 – 2009
72 Honorary memberships
73 Nominating committee, 1985 – 2003
74 Nominating committee, 2004 - 2009
75 Program committee : Sample program outlines 1
76 Program committee: Sample program outlines 2
10 77 Program committee: Sample program outlines 3
78 Program committee: Sample program outlines 4
79 Program committee: Sample program outlines 5
80 Program committee: Sample program outlines 6
81 Program committee : Minutes 1, 1981 – 1989
82 Program committee : Minutes 2, 1990 – 1992
83 Program committee : Minutes 3, 1993 – 2003
84 Program committee : Minutes 4, 2004 –
11 85 Program committee : Correspondence and miscellaneous
86 Public relations committee: Ads, fliers, articles, related materials, 1981 - 1989
87 Public relations committee: Ads, fliers, articles, related materials, 1990 – 2001
88 Public relations committee: Ads, fliers, articles, related materials, 2006 – 2007
89 Public Relations Committee: Correspondence and Miscellaneous
90 Public Relations Committee: Minutes, 1982 – 2001
91 Public Relations Committee : “Received & Noted”, 1989 - 1992
92 PWA Outreach Committee / Hocutt-Ferguson PWA Assistance Fund
93 Publications Committee: minutes and miscellaneous, 1982 – 2001
94 Publications Committee: minutes and miscellaneous, 2007 - 2008
95 Publications Committee: “Newsflash”, 1986 – 1993
12 96 NCSF National Coalition for Sexual Freedom
97 Postmaster including mailing schedules
98 Special Events Committee: minutes and miscellaneous, 1982 – 2002
99 Special Events Committee: miscellaneous, 2008 –
100 Special Events Committee: Correspondence 1
101 Special Events Committee: Correspondence 2
102 TNG [The Next Generation], 2001 – 2003
103 Trademarking committee, 2000 – 2001
104 Web committee, 2004
Series 4 – Events
Records in this series include promotional and press materials, minutes, financial reports and other resources related to the production of GMSMA's large events including Folsom Street East, the Gotham Leatherman contest, NYC Leatherfest. Leather Pride Night and the Leather Leadership Conference were produced in conjunction with other New York City organizations. Notes related to GMSMA's archives (as maintained by Gil Kessler) and certificates presented to GMSMA are also included in this series.
12 105 Folsom Street East 1: Documents grouped by year
106 Folsom Street East 2: FSE 6 – FSE 8, 2002 - 2004
13 107 Folsom Street East 3: FSE #9 – 2007 and summary, 2005 - 2007
108 Gotham Leatherman contest, 1999
109 Leather Leadership Conference
110 Leather Pride Night 1
111 Leather Pride Night 2
112 Leatherfest 1
113 Leatherfest 2
114 Tenth Anniversary committee
115 Archives
116 Certificates given to GMSMA
14 117 National Movements 1 includes 1987 March on Washington and 1988 “Dallas/SSCA Fiasco”, 1987 - 1988
118 National Movements 2 : Includes 1988 “Cosmos” and 1993 March on Washington, 1988 - 1993
119 National Movements 3 : File of the 1994 Leather / SM / Fetish Celebration in NYC, 1994
Series 5 – Legal and Law cases
Records in this series document two legal cases involving GMSMA. Christopher Scanlon v. Gil Kessler, Bruce Marcus, John Weis, and Gay Male S/M Activits was a copyright infringement case wherein Christophe Scanlon claimed that GMSMA used photographs he had taken at various GMSMA events. Joseph Miloni v. New York Body Works, Brian Nolan, Michael Clark, Hal Hansen, GMS/MA and Brush Creek Media Inc. was a photo release case wherein the plantiff clamed the GMSMA published his image in Newslink without his consent, as contained in an advertisement for New York Body Works.
15 120 Legal & Law cases material 1: Scanlon v. GMSMA, 1997
121 Legal & law cases material 2: Scanlon v. GMSMA (Official transcript of the trial)
122 Legal & Law cases material 3: Scanlon v. GMSMA: material after the trial transcript, 1998 - 1999
123 Legal & law cases material 4: Miloni v. GMSMA, 1999
Series 6 - Photography
Binder 1 GMSMA Social Slides
Page - topic - no. of slides - notes
1 - Miscellaneous social slides - 10
2 - Various gay pride days, 1983 - 1989 - 20
3 - Board retreat 1983 - 6
3 - Social, October 1983 (or earlier) - 10
4 - Mr. Leather Contest (New York 1984) - 33 - original name
6 - Board retreat 1985 - 5
7 - Mr. Spike Contest 1985 - 45
10 - Mr. Leather New York Contest 1985 - 75
14 - Mr. Mineshaft '85 contest - 58
17 - 5th anniversary party 1986 - 17
18 - LeatherFest 1986 - 25
20 - 6th Anniversary party 1987 - 6
21 - Picnic, July 1987 - 16
22 - COSMOS, 1988 - 4
23 - LeatherFest 1988 - 60
26 - 9th anniversary party 1990 - 10
27 - Leather Pride Night 1991 - 16
28 - Dungeon Demo, 12/93 - 5
Binder 2 Technique slides
Page - topic - no. of slides - notes
1 - Abrasion - 3
1 - Ass Play - 1
1 - Blacksmith - 8
2 - Bondage - 10
3 - Bondage Fashion Show 1985 - 5
3 - Bondage Fashion Show 1987 - 2
3 - Bondag Fashion Show 1989 - 5
4 - Clamp & Clothespins - 7
4 - Clothespins & Clamps 1/18/92 - 10
4 - Things That Pinch program 3/26/97 -
4 - Miscellaneous - 3 - from photos by Kessler
5 - Dungeon Equipment - 2
5 - Flogging - 10
5 - Gags - 4
6 - Genitorture - 14
6 - Genitorture program - 4
6 - Genitorture program 1/23/02 - 14 -also used 4 slides from page 6
7 - Masks - 1
7 - Mummification - 3
7 - Sounds - 1
7 - Spanking - 2
7 - Suspension - 4
8 - Tattoos - 14
9 - Temperature Torture (Hot Wax) - 2
9 - Tickling - 1
9 - Tub at the Mineshaft - 3
9 - 101 Ways to Tie a Man to a Bed program (the title sign only) - 1
10 - Weekend Fantasy program 5/86 - 200 - Ralph Whitaker / Rick DiOrio
GMSMA Photo Archives
Where possible, names of people in photos are on the back of each photo - list of number of photos, photograph names and event dates are available from the LA&M.
Bondage Fashion Show 1989
Shaving Program (Paddles) 1989
Dungeon Demo (Paddles) 1990
LeatherFest (Eagle) 1990
Dungeon Demo (Paddles) 1991
10th Anniversary 1991
The Next Voice You Hear program rehearsal (Gil's) 1991
Dungeon Demo (Cellblock 28) 1991
Dungeon Demo (Paddles) 1991
Anniversary Brunch (Paddles) 1992
Leather Pride Night (Limelight) 1992
Making booth for Pride Day 1992
Gay Pride Parade 1992
Dungeon Demo (Cellblock) 1992
Leather Marketplace + S/M Workshops (Center) 1991
12th Anniversary (Paddles) 1993
Presenting Founders Society check 1993
March on Washington 1993
Gay Pride Parade 1993
Board Retreat 1993
Welcome Back Social 1993
Anniversary Brunch 1994
Leather Man's store window (stayed up for entire month) 1994
SHARE walk 1994
Dungeon Demo (Cellblock 28) 1994
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1995
Revenge of the S/M Game Show program 1995
Leather Pride Night 1995
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1995
Brankding program 1995
Leatherfest Marketplace 1995
December social (Center) 1995
15th Anniversary (Eagle) 1996
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1996
Leather Pride Night 1996
Board Retreat (Graywood Manor) 1996
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1996
LeatherFest 1996
Politics & Protest program 1996
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1997
Rope Bondage program 1997
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1997
Leather Leadership Conference (Center) 1997
Annual Meeting + Fashion Show 1997
Leather Pride Night (Roxy) 1997
Folsom Street East 1997
Raunch Program 1997
Gay Pride Day 1997
Spanking / Paddling / Caning Program 1997
Edge Play program 1997
Mummification program 1997
Heavy Metal program 1998
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1998
Folsom Street East 1998
Endurance Bondage program 1998
Gay Pride Day 1998
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1998
Fighting Back program 1998
Tattoo program 1998
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 1999
The Art of Porn program 1999
Uniforms program 1999
Punching program 1999
Mummification program 1999
Gay Pride Day 1999
Blood Sports program 1999
Tom of Finland program 2000
State of the Leather Nation program 2000
The Newlywed Game (Master / slave program) 2000
Board retreat 2000
Leather Pride Night (Roxy) 2000
LeatherFest 2000 (20th Anniversary Celebration) 2000
Dungeon Demo (Manhole) 2001
Leatherfest artists 2002
L.U.R.E. plaque 2003
Drying FSE7 money (from the rain) 2003
Series 7 – Audio Visual Media,
16 Audio tape cassette and VHS tape cassette box
88 cassette tapes of recorded programs. Full list available from the LA&M. Topics include raunch, flogging, tit torture, masks, erotic flogging, are we the target?, daddies, abrasion scenes, setting the scene, tattoos, genitorture, humiliation, s/m and domestic violence, novice top SIG meeting
VHS tapes listed:
GMSMA on TV!
In the Life segment with GMSMA
Union of Gary Secher and wynn miller
A matter of choice? Nightline 2002
Dramatic punches 1992
Turn on the Tales GMSMA 1993
S/M in the movies
TLC : Year with a leather club
GMSMA presents "The next voice you hear"
Series 8 – Artifacts
17 Artifacts
Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center membership card to GMSMA (Founder) with attached pin
4 pins given to past members who have completed the Novices SIG course
CD labeled "GMSMA Archival Material as of 1/25/2007 from Gil Kessler Archivist"
4 small GMSMA patches
5 GMSMA pins
Glass award - Pantheon of Leather V club of the year GMSMA
Glass award - Pantheon of Leather V club event of the year International SM / Leather / Fetish Celebration New York
Plastic mug, GMSMA Leatherfest
Black ceramic boot, Centurion Award to GMSMA
Wooden plaque with metal front - GMSMC special friendship award 1989 to GMSMA
Wooden plaque with metal front - GMHC and ARC to GMSMA for 1985 Mr. Leather New York Contest
Wooden plaque with metal front - Certificate of appreciation to GMSMA for contribution to research study
Framed photograph and pin presented to GMSMA from SM Gays (London, England) March 1991
4 laminated pages from GMSMA Newslink special stonewall 25 celebration issue
4 medallions with a note "sample awards we gave at the summer picnic"
Framed certificate presented to GMSMA from Avatar for 5 years
4 wooden plaques with metal fronts to GMSMA from Pocono Warriors for participation in Whitewater Weekend
GMSMA Florida license plate (sticker expires "88")
Leather wrapped box containing a red glass heart, presented to GMSMA from Defenders / Dignity NY at Indulgence I 11/20/1998 in honor ofGMSMA's Folsom Street East block party
Leather wristband with cloth label "Official GMSMA photographer"
GMSMA Seal