Lammas Women's Books & More (1974-2000)
Backstory and Context
In 1974, Lammas opened as a craft and jewelry store that also stocked some books. It quickly evolved into a bookstore. Lammas was a meeting space for women in the lesbian community as well as a retail store. The publication Women's Monthly, which at one time was published by Lammas, conducted a survey around the time of the store's closure and found that most respondents attended events there like author readings or movie screenings in addition to patronizing it by purchasing books.
Owners of the store over the years included Jane Troxell, who later became the director of the Lambda Literary Foundation, and Sylvia Colon.
The closing of Lammas was part of a rise in independent bookstore closures in the early 2000s, due in part to the growth of chain and online booksellers. During this period, distinctly lesbian spaces were also closing in the Washington, DC area as LGBTQ culture gained more mainstream acceptance.
Alston-Akers, Melanie H. Losing Lammas, Women's Monthly. July 2002. Accessed July 21st 2020. https://archives.rainbowhistory.org/items/show/851.
Anonymous. Lammas Women's Books and More, Lost Womyn's Spaces. September 28th 2011. Accessed July 19th 2020. https://lostwomynsspace.blogspot.com/2011/09/lammas-womens-books-and-more.html.
Hoover, Eric. Fading Places, Washington City Paper. October 13th 2000. Accessed July 19th 2020. https://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/news/article/13020943/fading-places.
Williams, Stephanie. A historical walking tour and a revitalized march honor D.C.’s lesbian past, Washington Post. May 30th 2019. Accessed July 19th 2020. https://www.washingtonpost.com/express/2019/05/30/historical-walking-tour-revitalized-march-honor-dcs-lesbian-past/.