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Archives and Collections
The June L. Mazer Lesbian Collection, formerly the West Coast Lesbian Collections, was founded in Oakland, California, in 1981. Six years later it was moved to Los Angeles by Connexxus Women's Center/Centro de Mujeres, and it acquired its present name in 1987 after the death of June L. Mazer, a community activist and an invaluable supporter of the collection. The Mazer Collection remains the only archive in the western half of the United States that is dedicated exclusively to preserving lesbian history and to "guaranteeing that those who come after us will not have to believe that they 'walk alone.'" It is committed to gathering and preserving materials by and about lesbians of all classes, ethnicities, races, and experiences. Included are personal letters and scrapbooks, private papers, artwork, manuscripts, books, records and audio recordings, newspapers, magazines, photographs, videos, flyers, papers from lesbian organizations, and even clothing, such as softball team uniforms from the 1940s and 1950s. The all-volunteer staff of the Mazer Collection not only keeps the doors open but also helps make lesbian communities aware of lesbian history through speaking engagements, the collection's newsletter In the Life, and special programs and exhibits.