Buzzfeed has uncovered a piece of marriage-equality history: a same-sex wedding from 1970. Bonus: the women — Edna Knowles and Peaches Stevens — were both black, and the nuptials were covered by none other than historic African-American publication Jet magazine.
Granted, this wasn’t the usual celebratory wedding profile as much as it was a news piece about what was clearly a novel event of questionable legality. “Bride,” “groom” and “married” are in quotes throughout, and the writer even called the attorney general’s office to inquire about the union:
Here’s a gem from the Jet Magazine archives: “Two women, Edna Knowles and Peaches Stevens, were wed in Liz’s Mark III Loung, a gay bar on Chicago’s South Side, before a host of friends and well-wishers.” The article, titled “Two Female ‘Married” In Chicago — To Each Other” appeared in a 1970 issue of Jet, a popular black magazine based in Chicago.
The article went on to say, “The Illinois attorney general’s office explained to Jet that there is no state statute that either bans or sanctions such marriages. Although the duo has a type of “marriage license” in their possession, the state’s official marriage license bureau reported it has no record of their license.”
We’d love to know what Edna and Peaches are up to this week as the Supreme Court contemplates cases surrounding the type of union they embraced decades ago.