This is where you’ll find a really cool timeline, showing the history of the Leather community, as it is reported to us. Have something that should be here? Let us know!

February 12, 1999

Louisiana Sodomy Law Overturned

Louisiana's sodomy law is removed by a 3-0 ruling of the state court of appeals. In February, the state's Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal reversed the conviction of a man found guilty of having oral sex with a woman. That case has been appealed to the state Supreme Court. 
January 1, 1999

Beyond the Edge Cafe Closes

Beyond the Edge Cafe, Seattle's premier gathering site for the kinky community, closes its doors.
January 1, 1999

NLA:Portland becomes PLA

Members of the former NLA: Portland chapter continue to meet and, after last month's rescinding of their NLA chapter charter, rename their group Portland Leather Alliance.
December 15, 1998

Out Olympic Swimmer

In Canada, Mark Tewksbury, who won three Olympic swimming medals and set seven world records, comes out as gay. He had recently lost a six figure contract as a motivational speaker because he was "too openly gay." So he decided he needed to open the closet door all the way. Tewksbury became a prominent advocate for gay rights and gay causes in Canada and the world. On May 16, 2003, Tewksbury joined the board of directors for the 2006 World Outgames in Montreal and was named co-president.
November 23, 1998

Georgia Sodomy Law

The Georgia Supreme Court, in a 6 to 1 decision, rules that the Georgia Sodomy Law is unconstitutional on the grounds of the "right of privacy". This is the same law that was upheld by the US Supreme court in June 1986!
October 28, 1998

Fetish Vampires

World premier of Razorblade Smile, at Prince Charles Cinema in London. The film is Jake West’s homage to fetish vampires

October 16, 1998

Maryland Oral Sex Law

A Maryland court voids a decades old law criminalizing same-partner oral sex. The law, which dated back to 1916, made it a felony for lesbians and gay men to engage in oral sex and attached penalties of up to $1000 or 10 years in prison.
October 6, 1998

Matthew Shepard

In Laramie Wyoming, Matthew Shepard, a 21 year old gay man, and a student at the University of Wyoming, is lured from a bar by two men, viciously beaten, burned and left tied to a fence in freezing weather. He dies a few days later. The incident focuses national attention on Gay bashing and on hate crimes legislation.
June 11, 1998

Bare Chest Calendar

Selection of the cover man for the 1999 South of Market Bare Chest Calendar. This year, sponsored for the first time, by Miller Brewing Company
April 7, 1998

George Michael

 George Michael, British singer noted for songs such as "I Want Your Sex" and "Freedom," is arrested for performing a "lewd act" in Will Rogers Memorial Park in Beverly Hills. Four days later he appears on CNN to come out as gay and say that he is currently in a relationship with a man.
December 1, 1997

Same Sex Secual Harressment Case

The US Supreme Court hears Joseph Oncale's sexual harassment case against Sundowner Offshore Services, Inc. Oncale was harassed by his supervisor and other workers on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Lower courts had ruled that sexual harassment laws required the predators and victim to be of different genders. In 1998 the Supreme Court rules in Oncale's favor, extending sexual harassment law to same sex encounters.
October 11, 1997

Living in Leather XII

Living in Leather XII is held in Portland. Under bylaws revisions Mark Frasier becomes President and Jan Hall becomes vice president and president elect.
September 27, 1997

SF Leather Pride Week

First Leather Pride week in San Francisco.
February 15, 1997

Wes Randall

Pantheon of Leather Community Service is awarded to Wes Randall of Seattle

January 1, 1997

La Nouvelle Justine

A theme restaurant, La Nouvelle Justine, opens in Manhattan. The theme is SM, Along with the French cuisine, the staff of Top identified waitpersons and bottom identified supporting staff, both male and female, appropriately attired in leather and paraphanalia, will provide spankings, boot licking and other services. Prices are on the menu! Most guests sit at the tables, some eat out of a bowl on the floor.
January 1, 1997

Pat Boone

Pat Boone, pop singing star of the 1950's and 60's tarnished his squeaky clean Christian image by appearing on the American Music Awards telecast wearing a leather vest, dog collar, studded wristbands and flashing his 62 year old bare chest with temporary tattoos. Trinity Broadcast Network quickly canceled Boone's weekly gospel music show. On ABC's Good Morning America Boone later said, "God is into leather. The first clothes he made for anybody on this planet, he made them out of leather."
December 14, 1996

PDX Same Sex Marriage

Marriage in Portland OR of Sharon Contreas and Lori Michelle Buckwalter. Buckwalter, still legally a male at the time of the ceremony, is in the last stages of gender change, which will be completed shortly after the ceremony. Then two legally recognized women will be partners in a legally recognized marriage.
November 1, 1996

Swan Lake – In Leather

Matthew Bourne’s new production of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake opens in London. Rewritten to feature an all male cast of swans and a prince who falls in love with the with the Swan King, who is dressed in black leather, the production is a hit in London and later in Los Angeles. It opens on Broadway in Nov. 1998.

October 5, 1996


Living In Leather XI is held in Portland OR. Jan Hall becomes female co-chair. Lifetime Achievement Awards are presented to Bob Flanagan and Sheree Rose, and to Jo Arnone. The International Mr. and Ms NLA titles are terminated, though Stacey is designated to continue as an Ambassador of NLA until further notice.
June 22, 1996

Beeeyond the Edge Fetish Nights

Beyond the Edge Cafe in Seattle hosts the first in it's series of Fetish Nights.