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San Francisco in the 1970s
Photographed by Chicago publicist, gay rights activist and a Chicago Cubs fan known as the “Bleacher Preacher,” Jerry Pritikin, the exhibit entitled “San Francisco in the 1970s” features photos of gay life in San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood, which was an epicenter for the gay rights movement prior to the AIDS epidemic of the Eighties. (continued on next slide)
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
San Francisco in the 1970s
Pritikin, who moved from Chicago during the early 1960s to be part of San Francisco’s growing gay community, documented the rising movement with candid shots of: life in the Castro neighborhood, which is a tourist attraction for many today;   (continued on next slide)
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
San Francisco in the 1970s
San Francisco’s early gay pride parade; and the late Harvey Milk leading a protest in Castro before Milk, who was assassinated in 1978, became the first openly gay man in America to be elected to public office in California. 
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
San Francisco in the 1970s
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
San Francisco in the 1970s
Photo by Jerry Pritikin
Photo by Jerry Pritikin

San Francisco in the 1970s

June 3–August 13, 2010

About the Photographer
During the 1970s, Jerry Pritikin was a publicist and freelance photographer specializing in gay clients—bars and businesses—at a time when it was not yet fashionable to be openly gay, even in San Francisco. He displayed his photographs in a Castro street bakery shop, and developed his photos at a new camera shop, owned by Harvey Milk. On June 6, 1977—a date called Orange Tuesday—Anita Bryant led voters to rescind a gay rights ordinance in Dade County Florida that, in turn, caused an impromptu march from San Francisco's Castro Neighborhood. With Harvey Milk leading the protestors using a bullhorn and ordering people to "get out of the bars and into the streets" over 5,000 marched past City Hall, and downtown to Union Square. Milk spoke to the large crowd that crammed the Square using his bullhorn in one hand, a candle in the other, and a single sign in the background that read SAVE OUR RIGHTS. After snapping the now iconic image of Milk, Pritikin took his film to the Associated Press, which put the photo on their wire service. That image introduced Harvey Milk to a national audience five months before he was elected as the first gay male politician in the country. On November 27th, 1978, former police office and Board of Supervisor member Dan White assassinated Milk, along with San Francisco Mayor George Moscone.

Press about the Exhibition:


Exhibition curated by Michael Ensdorf.