Nigel Campbell's picture

1950's Photo Booth Provided A Safe Space For Gay Couples

While PDA amongst gay men may be common place in 2014, these photos from 1953 remind us of an era where our love was not only looked down upon (okay--so some things haven't completely changed) but was illegal. 

Thankfully, brave gentlemen like Joseph John Bertrund Belanger were able to find safe spaces for expression--perhaps most intimately in this photo booth, which captured his romance for posterity! 

TIME writes: 

It was taken in 1953, a time when purposefully vague statutes on morals, lewd conduct, or disorderly conduct in many states allowed the police to target and arrest gay and lesbian people for such transgressions as wearing items of clothing of the opposite sex, propositioning someone of the same sex, or even holding hands with a member of the same sex. This photo could have gotten these men arrested.

The image is part of the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at the University of Southern California Libraries – the largest repository of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer materials in the world. The picture was once owned by the young man on the right-hand side of the image above, Joseph John Bertrund Belanger. Belanger, for most of his life, was a devoted collector of LGBT history. Born in Edmonton, Canada, in 1925, he served in the Royal Canadian Air Force and was a member of the Mattachine Society – an early instance of what today would be called an LGBT organization — in the early 1950s. It is thanks to his passion and foresight that the image survives today.

We love these!! We'll have to pay the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at USC a visit!!


I want to tell the whole world about Dr odudu and he help me out in pain when i was in relationship problem Dr odudu solve it for me in just 48hours am so happy to day is the help of Dr odudu the great caster who help the rich and the poor contact him now if you are in any problem of such like relationship poverty sickness promotion and you want to get a big joy of never before contact Dr odudu on or call +2348051913076 his the solution of all via him now without now delay or call +2348051913076 morga from holland

So glad these photos survived. Love is Louder!

For once i have never believe that spell casting posses such powers to bring back ex lover within the speed of light if i must use that word. I am from Aland Island and i am so happy to be on this site to thank the powerful man called DR.ZABAZA. The reason why i am thanking this great man is that he was able to use his powers through spelling casting to restore my broken relationship and with that i was totally satisfied with his service and this is the reason why i am recommending his services to other people out there who are having problems in there relationship to contact DR.ZABAZA on these detail +2348182620374 or through email at 

What the fuck is kevdobbins35205's problem?

He's getting off on reading Gay people's comments while pretending he is a homophobe.

He's jealous.


Too bad this booth didnt implode with these worthless fags inside.


Gorgeous!!!! *Swoons*

love these old photos...................such love captured......and man.....what courage............god bless............beautiful

I always loved that time era, we're so fortunate to be able to be open about our feelings now a days

Love it!!!!!

Beautiful. So proud.

Add new comment