October 19, 1891 – May 9, 1978
Dearborn native Marguerite Bieber Hicks attended the University of Michigan as an undergraduate from 1910 to 1911, finished her B.A. in English at Wayne State University while a housewife in 1935, and completed her M.A. in 1938. During the 1930s and 1940s, with the help of her longtime partner Thelma James, Hicks amassed a rare collection of books by and about women from the 17th and 18th centuries.
Detroit Free Press, May 10, 1978
Marguerite Hicks Project at Oakland University
May 30, 1899 – January 23, 1988
Thelma Gray James graduated with high distinction from the University of Michigan in 1920. She joined the faculty of the College of the City of Detroit, forerunner of Wayne State University, in 1923, retiring from Wayne in 1967 as a pioneering folklorist. James shared various Detroit homes with her close partner of 40 years Marguerite Hicks.
Detroit Free Press, January 24, 1988
February 12, 1938 – February 1, 2016
Louis Rhodes Farmer was born in Lynchburg, Virginia and moved to Michigan in 1956. He was employed as a custodian for the University of Michigan while working his way through college, served in the U.S. military from 1961 to 1963, and earned his M.A. in education from Eastern Michigan University in 1970. Farmer retired from teaching with the Chlesea School District in 1988 and lived in Ypsilanti.
Ann Arbor News, February 16, 2016
October 15, 1916 – October 2, 2010
Chester James “Chet” Sampson of Los Angeles was born in Hubbell and attended Michigan Tech before transferring to the University of Michigan. During World War II he produced variety shows in the U.S. Navy. He later taught high school in Grosse Pointe before opening his own travel agency. In 1965, he founded ONE in Detroit, only the second formal homosexual organization in Michigan.
Grosse Pointe News, November 4, 2010
December 5, 1932 – February 19, 2014
Born in East Grand Rapids, John “Jack” Campbell attended the University of Michigan for a year before finishing his B.A. in accounting at Kent State. In 1965 he opened the Club Baths in Cleveland, the launch of a national chain of gay bath houses. Later in Miami, he helped lead resistance to Anita Bryant’s “Save Our Children” crusade. Campbell remained active in Democratic Party politics throughout his life.
Grand Rapids Press, October 12, 2014
October 30, 1946 – February 22, 1976
Randall Douglas “Doug” Fox was born in Indiana, earned his Bachelor’s at Earlham College and his Master’s at the University of Michigan. Following grad school, he moved to Detroit and worked as an assistant manager at Woolworth’s. Fox’s body was found bludgeoned and shot in the head on the sidewalk in the Virginia Park neighborhood in what friends considered an anti-gay killing.
Detroit News, February 23, 1976
January 29, 1956 – January 20, 2011
West Bloomfield resident and University of Michigan football fan Heather Louise Higgins hosted popular Port of Call parties at her home on Middle Straits Lake, enjoying water skiing and riding on her pontoon. Since 2003, she was the owner of Tis Herself Entertainment. Higgins died from cancer at age 54.
Lesbian Connection, July/August 2011