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1971 – Minnesota and the USA’s First Legal Gay Marriage Took Place 41 Years Ago – Video

First Gay Marriage 1971

At midnight on Wednesday, Minnesota becomes the 12th state in the nation to legalize same sex marriage. It’s been a lifetime struggle for many, including one Minneapolis couple who are believed to be the first gay couple in the United States to be married – and it was 42 years ago.

Jack Baker and Mike McConnell were legally married by a young Methodist minister in Mankato, MN. Baker had legally changed his name to the gender-neutral Pat Lynne McConnell and McConnell got the marriage license. By the time the state of MN figured it out it was already too late. The two were legally married.

While Minnesota did try to null and void their marriage Baker and McConnell fought back fguriously and predicted they would win eventually, but the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that their marriage was illegal. However, their license was never revoked and they still have it today.

Baker and McConnell currently have no plans to marry under Minnesota’s new marriage equality law because, as they rightfully and proudly say, they already are.

You can watch rare footage and learn even more about Mike and Jack’s story at CBS – WCCO 4 MN


Will Kohler

Will Kohler is one of America's best known LGBT historians, He is also a a accredited journalist and the owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced on such notable media venues as BBC News, CNN, MSNBC, The Washington Post, The Daily Wall Street Journal, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story. Back2Stonewall has been recently added to the Library of Congress' LGBTQ+ Studies Web Archive. Mr. Kohler is available for comment, interviews and lectures on LGBT History. Contact: Will@Back2Stonewall.com

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