Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Tim Retzloff

Tim Retzloff  His research on queer life in Michigan has appeared in GLQ, the Detroit area newspaper Between the Lines, and the anthology Creating a Place for Ourselves (1997). He lives in Ann Arbor with his partner.

I have found his name turning up on allot of research regarding Detroit gay history. He has written some books on the subject. Here are some links to articles or books he has written on the subject:
(Note: Tim is a professional historian, I am just an amateur!)

Tim Retzloff - Article

Tim Retzloff - Article about him  

Tim Retzloff - Google Book Result


  1. Tim dont forget The Hub Grill or H&N's resturant downtown they were the places we kids hung out on Farmer and Bates in downtown's fabled Monroe block so if you were just coming out back then these are the places you would hang out at I was 12 when I first ventured across that street (thank you) to my straight friend who said never cross that street or you'll turn queer, you know he was right!

    Well I shouldn't give him that credit because I was fiddleing around in Military school long before that fabulous day I shed that mask.

    H&N was always the place for me, walking in it was small L shaped and diverse butch's and femme's alike would hang out there and of course there were the icons such as Ms Harlow whom there was no way you would miss her in a crowd with bright orange hair cut in a sassoon and bright blue eye shadow skinny as a rail in black stretch pants, she would stand there on the corner in front of H&N in broad daylight arms crossed and stare down people who would make fun of her( her favorite line ) smell me Bitch! and snap her fingers above her head.

    H&N was the place where we could feel like people it had a white tower type of decor and sold sliders and oh boy did the pedo's come out at night looking for kids my age, but I was also looking for them old guys too you know 25 or 30 OMG!Oh and there was Pearl who worked as a prostitute (a man) in drag on brush who was just hilarious and Stevie (a girl) who looked so much like a guy it was unreal these were all knew experiences for me seeing this diverse group of people getting along so great.

    Now that block is a parking lot but my friends and I do pilgrimages (you like that) to the block every halloween to relive those moments at H&N's resturant......

    Now I'm well into my sixtie's OMG! and still I have a Picture of that block on my computer and many wonderful memories of H&N and the summers in downtown 1962 to 1967

  2. You have done a wonderful job and yes Mr Retzloff has interviewed me as well both of your knowledge on gay history in Detroit is very accurate but there are still some gray areas that were not mentioned like the gay house on Virginia Park where quite alot of gay kids lived, one in particular was Chili Pepper.

    Before she became the Diva of Chicago she was just like any other queen who just started working at the Gold Dollar Bar, but there were 10 other kids who lived there, unfortunatley many have passed away.

    Chili had the room next to me and my lover it was a beautiful home with 7 bedrooms we had the large master suite with fireplace and huge windows and half bath, and i would take her to her Dr and to visit her parents actually her mom and step dad who didn't want her around.

    This house became a haven for cast out kids who didn't have a place to go so they would often sneak them in because the owners who were an older straight couple still lived downstairs in the main apartment, but wre very gay friendly.

    Well that still has many stories to tell and there were other homes on Virginia Park that also catered to the gays and that was from early 1968 to 1973 when the owners sold the home to Wayne State and it became a commune(HIPPIE).