Our Collection

Online Archives

Rainbow History Project is dedicated to making our collection accessible to everyone with an interest in Washington, D.C.’s LGBTQ history. Online access to digitized materials is available through several portals.

Physical Archives

Since 2008, the DC History Center has been the home of Rainbow History Project’s physical collection and provides in-person research access.

Oral Histories

The oral history collection is made of more than 350 audio interviews of people recounting their diverse personal experiences, stories that often are not in official records and which cannot be heard in any other way.

Places and Spaces Database

This social geography database documents locations of importance to the Washington, D.C.-area’s diverse LGBTQ communities. Our data begins in the 1890s and goes through today–a full 100+ years of LGBTQ history told through space.

Community Pioneers

The vibrant and diverse LGBTQ communities in the Washington area today would not exist without the dedication and vision of remarkable people who came before. Since 2003, Rainbow History Project has given Community Pioneer awards to recognize noteworthy individuals and groups.


Rainbow History volunteers have created timelines of some of the key dates and events in the history of the D.C. area’s diverse LGBTQ communities. RHP has identified timelines as a priority project and is actively seeking volunteers to help.

Using our collection

We invite everyone with an interest in LGBTQ history to use our collection.

Become a volunteer

Rainbow History Project is an all-volunteer organization and we encourage you to get involved. We always need volunteers to help grow our collection and develop public programs.