California Split
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Published in: November-December 2009 issue.


Pre-Gay L.A.Pre-Gay L.A.: A Social History of the Movement for Homosexual Rights
C. Todd White
U. of Illinois Press.  258 pages, $25.


IN THE EARLY MORNING HOURS of Sunday, April 18, 1965, Donald Slater and four other men cleared out the Venice Boulevard office of ONE, Inc., taking everything—furniture, typewriters, records—to a rented warehouse space on Cahuenga Boulevard in Hollywood. This task accomplished, Slater went home to feed his cats and take a shower. He then returned to the empty Venice Boulevard office and sat on an overlooked chair in the middle of the room awaiting the arrival of Dorr Legg, which Slater knew would come early as Legg was preparing for a meeting in which he planned to oust Slater from the organization. Back in 1952 Slater and Legg had been among the seven founders of ONE, Inc., and they had worked together for thirteen years to make this pioneering homophile organization thrive. Now they faced each other in an angry battle over control.

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