Foolscap Gay Oral History Project
For a full view of this ongoing project, please see the Digital Collections site of the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives.

Not all the material is online, but this link will give you a sense of the interviews.

Foolscap Gay Oral History Project (1981-1989)

This is a historical community gay history project that I've been working to collect, preserve, and make accessible to researchers and the general public through the LGBTQ Oral History Digital Collaboratory.

Foolscap was a Toronto-based oral history project about pre-Stonewall gay life that John Grube and Lionel Collier conducted in the 1980s.  The project produced over 100 life histories, describing (among other topics) the Stonewall Riots, Operation Soap, HIV/AIDS, psychiatry, policing, sex work, criminalization, intergenerational relationships, health and aging. The collection includes over 300 audio recordings from 125 interviews with 100 narrators; 51 of the interviews have transcripts.

Working with students in the Collaboratory, we have collected and digitized the tapes, written abstracts and metadata, and created a digital exhibition entitled "Mapping Foolscap: Gay Oral Histories 1981-1987." Undergrad student Zohar Freeman, who has done a massive amount of work digitizing and writing metadata, collaborated with me on interviewing Lionel Collier about the project (see below). We are currently working on writing a finding aid for the project and ingesting the metadata into InMagic, the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives' cataloguing system.

The Collaboratory has been covered in Oral History Association's Podcast, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and in the TSQ: The Transgender Quarterly

Zohar has presented his work on the Foolscap project at a number of sites, including...

In this interview from December 2017, Foolscap interviewer Lionel Collier describes the project's history: