Lots of end of the year bookkeeping so I thought I’d take a break from the usual format and present a quiz from my files. Have fun!
Test your knowledge of transgender history by answering these multiple-choice questions or simply use it to learn for the first time. The answers are provided below. They may surprise you and so may the stories represented in other responses.
This quiz is designed to inform and features pieces of the transgender world from high to low, from conscience to farce, and from the curious to the incredible. When it comes to seeing why the world is what it is, we must recognize all of our histories, including the histories of oppressed peoples if we are to recognize the validity of people as a whole.
Originally created in 2013 and periodically updated. It’s public domain so please do copy for others. Enjoy and employ.
- Who is the first elected judge in the United States who is openly transgender?
A. Phyllis Randolph Frye
B. Mara Keisling
C. Victoria Kolakowski
D. Theresa Sparks
2. Who was the first known elected mayor who is openly transgender?Phyllis Randolph Frye
A. Georgina Beyer
B. Stu Rasmussen
C. Susan Stanton
D. Tony Briffa
3. What contribution was made by the transman Alan J. Hart (1890-1962)?
A. He oversaw paper manufacturing standards.
B. He worked with Alfred Kinsey in his surveys of human sexuality and advised him concerning gender variant people.
C. He effectively spied on Russia for France.
D. He pioneered X-rays as a diagnostic tool for tuberculosis.
4. What eunuch general defeated the Ostrogoths at the Battle of Taginae in 552 CE?
5. What society, formed in 1892, was noted for cross dressing?
A. The Uranians
B. Hasty Pudding
C. Cercle Hermaphrodites
D. The Bohemian Club
6. What entrepreneur brought drag to New York City as a form of entertainment in 1945?
A. Marcel Weysmann
B. Pat Patillo
C. Frances Anderson
D. Julian Eltinge
7. What South African immigrant would reputedly set forth “the greatest collection of royalty?”
A. Joshua Norton
B. Caster Semenya
C. Jose Sarria
D. Lou Sullivan
8. Which court decision permitted post-operative transsexuals to marry as their post-operative sex?
A. MT vs. JT (1976)
B. Littleton vs. Prange (1999)
C. Anonymous vs. Mellon (1977)
D. Gardiner vs. Gardiner (2001)
9. Which is the first recorded organized protest by transgender people?
A. The Stonewall Uprising
B. The Compton Cafeteria Riot
C. The Cooper’s Donuts Protest
D. The Dewey’s Coffee Shop Protests
10. What famous drag performer was noted as a trapeze artist?
A. Lady Bunny
C. Jayne County
D. Quentin Crisp
11. Which group of gender-variant priestesses are represented on a relief at Aricca, near Rome on the Appian Way?
12. The International Transgender Day of Remembrance (November 20) memorializes transgender people who were murdered in hate crimes during the previous year. Where was the first Day of Remembrance observed?
A. United Nations Square, San Francisco
B. Newark High School, Newark CA
C. Woodlawn Memorial Park, Colma CA
D. The Castro District, San Francisco
13. The Roman poet, Ovid, popularized the story of Hermaphroditus. The location of the spring identified with his transformation is a real place that also had a temple. Where this location as is most closely described?
A. Bodrum, Turkey (Halicarnassus)
B. Ephesus in what is now Turkey
C. Heliopolis, Syria
D. Eleusis, Greece
14. In 2002, Saving Private Tootsie, a film, featured the rescue of gays and a group of a certain class of transgender people. What class was so represented?
A. Katoi (Kathoey)
15. Holly Woodlawn, one of Andy Warhol’s starlets, wrote a book of her own in 1991. What is the title of this book?
B. A Low Life in High Heels
C. My Gorgeous Life
D. Boys Will Be Girls
16. What contribution did Dr. Joan Roughgarden make?
A. She was a professor at the University of Michigan and a notable software engineer.
B. She was a Lakota Professor of Religious Studies at Keene University and wrote concerning Two-Spirited culture among Native Americans.
C. She was a Dutch surgeon who studied a collection of transsexual brains and proposed an organic cause of transsexualism based upon compelling evidence in the limbic systems of the brains he studied.
D. She was a Stanford professor who documented intersexuality and transsexualism in various species of animals, given evidence that the idea that God only made creatures male or female was nonsense.
17.Where was the first modern sexual reassignment surgeries conducted?
18. Who was the first known to play the opposite sex in silent era feature film?
A. Charlie Chaplin
B. Edith Storey
C. Ossi Oswalda
D. Asta Nielsen
19. What activist for the intersex population rose up in the late 1800’s?
A. Jenny June
B. Joseph Lobdell
C. Albert Cashier
D. Ernest Boulton
20. Who coined the word “transsexual”?
A. Virginia Prince
B. Karl Heinrich Ulrichs
C. Karl-Maria Kertbeny
D. Magnus Hirschfeld, MD
- C. Victoria Kolakowski was elected to the Superior Court in Oakland on November 2, 2010. She had also previously served 4 years as Administrative Law Judge with the California Public Utilities Commission.
- Phyllis Randolph Frye , a notable transgender attorney and activist, was appointed (not elected) as Associate Judge for the City of Houston Municipal Court in November 12, 2010, an appointment opposed by many in Houston because of her transgender status.
- Mara Kiesling is a transgender lobbyist in Washington DC and is Executive Director of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE).
- Theresa Sparks was President of the Police Commission of San Francisco in 2007, but lost a 2010 bid for the District 6 seat on the Board of Supervisors. She serves on San Francisco’s Human Rights Commission today.
- A. Georgina Beyer became Mayor of Christchurch, New Zealand in 1999.
- Stu Rasmussen was elected Mayor of Silverton, Oregon in 2008, the first openly transgender mayor in the United States.
- Susan Stanton has served as City Manager of Largo, Florida and was terminated after she announced her transition. She later went to work as City Manager of Lake Worth, Florida, but faced political enemies there as well.
- Tony Briffa became Mayor of Melbourne, Australia in 2011, the first openly intersex mayor anywhere.
- D. He was a physician who pioneered X-rays as a diagnostic tool for tuberculosis.
- Ts’ai Lun, a eunuch, oversaw paper manufacturing standards in China in the 2nd Century CE. He is also regarded by some to be the inventor of the papermaking process.
- Louise Lawrence was the transwoman who worked with Alfred Kinsey, continuing a correspondence in the 1940’s and 1950’s.
- France’s cross dressing spy to Russia was Charles Genevieve Lois Auguste Andre Timothe D’Eon De Beaumont. He was so convincing as a female, many believed him to be a woman to the day of his death in 1810. His name was later used to describe cross dressing (Eonism).
- C. Narses. His victory at Taginae saved Rome “for the Empire” (namely the Byzantine half) and so thoroughly crushed the Ostrogoths, they were unable to continue as a Gothic nation. The role of Narses is overlooked by the Seventh-Day Adventitsts who assert that Belisarius defeated the Ostragoths in 538, the last of 3 Arian kingdoms to establish the 1260 year papal temporal dominion. Adventists see this as necessary to establish the papacy as the Beast of the Apocalypse, and giving room to their computation of the year 1844 as the date of the beginning of the Investigative Judgment.
- Montanus in 156 CE retook his birth name after serving Cybele as a transgender priest, according to some. He infiltrated Christianity by declaring his prophecies to be from “The Paraclete”, beginning the Montanist movement.
- Pothinus was the eunuch adviser to Ptolemy XII in the 1st Century CE.
- Eutropius was the eunuch Roman Consul in the 5th Century CE.
- D. The Bohemian Club was formed in 1892 and continues today in a heavily guarded grove on the Russian River in Northern California. It has been attended by many notable people including Ronald Reagan, who would be elected President of the United States in 1980.
- The Uranians were a pederastic literary society centered at Oxford and Cambridge universities from 1870 to 1930. They may have cross dressed at times, but were formed long before 1892. Oscar Wilde was believed to have been a member.
- Hasty Pudding, a cross dressing theatrical group, was formed at Harvard in 1844. It made such a sensation, the tradition was adopted by similar theatrical societies in other universities throughout the country. At times, some actors tried to pass in public as well, possibly causing the rash of anti-cross-dressing laws throughout the northern states in the 1840’s and 1850’s.
- Cercle Hermaphrodites was formed as early as 1875 but before 1895 as the first known support group for intersex people “to unite for defense against the world’s bitter persecution.”
- B. Pat Patillo opened a string of downtown New York clubs that featured drag. They included “The Howdy,” “The 181 Club,” and “The 82 Club.”
- Marcel Wuysmann opened “Le Carrousel” in Paris in 1947. Le Carrousel featured a host of drag stars legendary for their beauty including Bambi and Coccinelle.
- Frances Anderson was for many years the champion of Women’s Billiards and only discovered to be “male” after her “suicide” in 1928.
- Julian Eltinge, born William Julian Dalton (1881-1941), was performing in drag at age 11 and became an international star. He was believed by some to be the greatest drag performer of all time.
- A. Joshua Norton immigrated to San Francisco from South Africa in the 1850’s and invested in rice. He cornered the rice market till an oriental shipment docked in port and caused the price of rice to plummet in 1859, rendering him a pauper. He recovered by proclaiming himself to be “The Emperor of the United States and Defender of Mexico.” His eccentric ruse made him a popular tourist attraction in the following decades. He was so successful; he exacted a “tax” on local businesses that actually paid up for entertaining customers and boosting their sales. (See Jose Sarria for the rest of the story of Emperor Norton and how this produced what the Guinness Book of World Records described as the “greatest collection of royalty”.)
- Caster Semenya, also from South Africa, is an intersex track star, competing as a female. She carried the South African flag at the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
- Jose Sarria is a San Francisco drag queen. After gaining the “Snow Queen” title in 1964, the San Francisco Chronicle ran a contest about Emperor Norton, complete with daily clues so readers could win “ducats”. Jose latched onto this in her act, proclaiming that she had a vision of Emperor Norton who “revealed” that she was his widow and so she proclaimed herself to be the “Absolute Empress” of what would become a charitable empire chock full of “emperors” and “empresses” called, The Imperial Court. The Guinness Book of World Records has described the San Francisco coronations of the Imperial Court as “the greatest collection of royalty.”
- Lou Sullivan founded the female-to-male transsexual support group, FTM International, in 1979.
- A. MT vs. JT decided this in New Jersey.
- Littleton vs. Prange had the opposite effect. It was a landmark ruling against post-operative marriages in Texas. Christie Littleton was married in Kentucky and she later moved with her husband to Texas. He fell ill and was in the care of Dr. Prange when he died, triggering a wrongful death suit. Defense attorneys, upon learning that Christie had been born “male,” presumed that she must have a 46 karotype XY chromosomal pattern. They argued successfully that Christie must still be male, and because Texas did not recognize same-sex marriage, Christie had no standing to sue. Activists since that time have pointed to the results of Olympic Gender Testing in the last half of the 20th Century which revealed a bewildering array of genotypes of people with female phenotypes including XXY males, XXY females including a Polish athlete who gave birth to healthy offspring, and XY females that included a Spanish athlete who protested so loudly she was eventually permitted to compete as a female. Meanwhile, the effect of the Littleton decision is losing strength, not only because of the 2015 Supreme Court decision recognizing same sex marriage, but the ongoing efforts of Houston area transsexual Nikki Arguz who is still fighting to secure her husband’s estate.
- Anonymous vs. Mellon affirmed the 1966 Anonymous vs. Weiner in New York, the first lawsuit regarding change of birth documents after sexual reassignment surgery. The court sided against the transsexual plaintiff. New York did not allow change in birth records till after 2000.
- Gardner vs. Gardner was a Kansas probate case which used the Littleton decision to deny J’Noel Gardner any part in the estate of her husband.
- C. The Cooper’s Donut Protest was in May 1959 in Los Angeles. Though arrests were made upon notably gay people during this spontaneous protest, drag queens were known to hang out at Cooper’s Donuts and police action targeted them. At that time, there was no differentiation between gay and transgender in the public consciousness.
- The Stonewall Uprising was in June 1969 during a police raid conducted on the night of the death of Judy Garland. The uprising was led by drag queens, most notably Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson who later formed the Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR). Stonewall was the flashpoint for the Gay Rights Movement.
- The Compton Cafeteria Riot occurred August 1966 in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district. The Compton Cafeteria was a gathering place for street queens to eat and rose up during a police raid. This sparked a localized move for transgender rights, but did not gain the national spotlight as did Stonewall.
- The Dewey’s Coffee Shop Protest was a 1965 sit-in over 2 nights conducted by 150 black transpeople in Philadelphia.
- B. Barbette, born Vander Clide (1899-1973) did this, performing undetected as a woman until removing his wig at the end of the performance. Barbette later debuted in Paris in 1928.
- Lady Bunny Hickory Dickory Dock Cougar Mellencamp began in a Quaker missionary family and later took up go-go dancing before becoming one of the most influential drag queens in America ever. She was the founder of Wigstock, an annual public drag event.
- Jayne County (Wayne County) performed alongside Andy Warhol’s girls in New York City, but was principally an independent rock musician who lived as a female.
- Quentin Crisp was a cross dressing British actor, storyteller, and dramatist who was never known to work with a trapeze.
- C. Sekhetu (Egyptian) are so represented. They were the priestesses of Isis and called, “Cnaedi” by the Romans. The Roman Isian cult featured Serapis instead of Osiris. The earlier individual term “Sekhet” is rarely found today. It’s more common to find references to such an individual as a Cnidus.
- The Gallae (Galli) were the gender-variant priestesses to Cybele, whose religious center was Pessinus in Bythinia-Phrygia, and with ties to Mt. Ida and the city of Troy. The peninsula opposite Troy, known as Gallipoli is really “Galli Bolu” or “Hill of the Gallae.” But these priestesses followed the meteorite associated with Cybele to Rome as part of that city’s effort to gain divine favor against Hannibal who was invading Italia at the time. Why would Romans look to Cybele? A Sibylline Oracle directed this, but there’s another reason rooted in what seems to have been a broadly held view. Virgil’s Aeneid presented the Romans as having descended from Aeneas who fled to North Africa and then to Italy after the Greeks destroyed Troy in the Trojan War.
- The Fanatici were the gender-variant priestesses to Ma-Enyo in Comana, Asia Minor.
- The Baptai were the gender-variant priestesses to Kotys and had close ties to the Gallae.
- D. The Castro District, San Francisco was the location of the first observance in 1999, featuring a march organized by Gwendolyn Ann Smith with participants shouting, “Stop the killing! Stop the hate!” One of the chief supporters of the event was Theresa Sparks who was then working with Marcus Arana of the Human Rights Commission and then Supervisor Mark Leno to form the Transgender Civil Rights Implementation Task Force. A video of the original march is available on YouTube.
- United Nations Square was the location for the second observance of the Day of Remembrance. After this, the observance expanded to other parts of the world, making the Day of Remembrance a truly international event.
- Newark High School was the site of a memorial to Gwen Araujo after her murder in 2002 which featured a showing of The Laramie Project, the story of a similar murder in Wyoming of gay student Matthew Shepard. The murder of 17-year old transgender Gwen Araujo aroused unprecedented outrage on a national scale. The “panic defense” used by the defendants in the murder trial was later made illegal by legislation.
- Woodlawn Memorial Park in Colma is the location of the gravesite of “Emperor” Joshua Norton, and consequently the location of an annual gravesite service conducted by The Imperial Court.
- A. It’s at what is now a military installation at Bodrum, Turkey, but the spring itself is now below sea level. The closest settlement in Ovid’s era was Halicarnassus.
- Ephesus was the location for the gender-variant priestesses of Artemis, the Megabyzes, known for their beauty and wisdom. They were known to dress in purple and gold attire. Another transgender group of priestesses here were the Melissai.
- Heliopolis, Syria was the center for the worship of Agadistis, a cult similar to that of Cybele. The transsexual Roman emperor, Elagabulus, was a worshipper of Agadistis, and had close ties to Heliopolis.
- Eleusis, about 6 miles west of Athens, was the site of the Eleusinian Mysteries. A Galla (or “Gallus”: a transgender priestess to Cybele) is said to have performed the part of Baubo-Iambe in the portion of the mysteries called, Gephryismos (Joking at the Bridge).
- A. The Katoi are so represented. The Katoi are the famous “Ladyboy” entertainers in Thailand, so adding sex appeal to the movie.
- The Hijra are the “3rd Sex” underclass in India who retain their landholdings from the Moghul Dynasty. They survive from the time of Ram if not before, and are noted in the Kama Sutra for their presence at weddings to bring good fortune, for assisting as midwives, and to bless children.
- The Bissu are hermaphroditic priests in Bugi culture in Indonesia. The Bugis recognize 5 genders of which the Bissu are the most intermediate.
- Muxe are the 3rd gender people represented in Zapotec culture to this day in Mexico.
- B. Holly Woodlawn wrote A Low Life In High Heels, published by St. Martin’s Press in 1991.
- Transvestia was 2 series of magazines published by the transgenderist, Virginia Prince, first debuting in 1952, then in 1960.
- My Gorgeous Life was written by the Australian drag comedienne Dame Edna Everage (Barry Humphries) and published by Macmillan Press in 1989.
- Boys Will Be Girls was written by journalist J.T. Talamini and published by the University Press of America in 1982.
- D. Joan Roughgarden did this. Her book, Evolution’s Rainbow: Diversity, Gender, and Sexuality in Nature, was published by the Berkeley University of California Press in 2004, but also reported her findings in 2000 in the TGSF Channel, being a member of that transgender support group.
- Lynn Conway teaches at the University of Michigan and is a software engineer. She maintains a well-known website on transgender issues including a list of transsexual success stories.
- Ken Dollarhide, PhD, is now retired but was a dean at Keene University and is Lakota. He has been a featured speaker in transgender conventions and considers himself to be a “guest of the transgender community” despite wide transgender acceptance, but does not identify as transgender himself. An article of his appeared in a magazine published by the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE), Transgender Tapestry in 2002 in which he wrote about winkte, male-to-female cross living individuals in Lakota society, and how Lakota culture relates to them.
- T. Kruijver, MD, was the surgeon who announced his findings concerning transsexual brains in 2001. His find was so compelling, a New Zealand group publicly announced that it then considered transsexualism to be an intersex condition.
- C. Germany, the surgeon being Magnus Hirschfeld, MD. He had founded the Institute for Sexual Science in Berlin, 1919 and conducted the first such surgery in 1920. The first patient so reassigned who we know by name is Lili Elbe (Einar Wegener) of Denmark in 1930. Dr. Hirschfeld fell victim to the Nazi purges. His institute was destroyed by Nazi mobs in the Night of the Long Knives in 1933, and he later became the propaganda poster child for Der Ewige Juden (The Eternal Jew).
- Maryland was the first state in which sexual reassignment surgery was performed in the United States, specifically at Johns Hopkins University. The principal surgeon developed the standard we use today for selecting candidates for sexual reassignment surgery today, named after him, The Harry Benjamin Standards.
- Morocco was a popular location for sexual reassignment surgeries in the 1950’s and 1960’s.
- Denmark was known for doing the sexual reassignment surgery for American patient Christine Jorgenson in 1952. The first known modern transsexual, Lili Elbe, was a Danish national.
- B. Edith Storey played a male part in A Florida Enchantment in 1914. However, a 1901 short in the Edison collection featured an unnamed female impersonator doing facial expressions for use in arcades. This collection is in the possession of Turner Classic Movies who present this collection to the public from time to time.
- Charlie Chaplin soon followed Storey in The Masquerader (1914), A Busy Day (1914), and A Woman (1915).
- Ossi Oswalda played a man in I Don’t Want to Be a Man in 1919.
- Asta Nielsen played the lead role in Hamlet in 1920.
- A. Jenny June, born Earl Lind and sometimes named Ralph Werther (1874-1920), was popularly credited with starting Cercle Hermaphrodites in 1895, but stated in a manuscript found by Randall Sell in 2010 that she was invited by Roland Reeves, Manon Lescaut, and Prince Pansy into that organization at New York City’s Paresis Hall in January of that year. Some estimates for when Cercle Hermaphrodites extend as far back as 1875. She wrote 2 books: Autobiography of an Androgyne (published in 1918) and The Female Impersonators (published posthumously in 1922).
- Joseph Lobdell (Lucy Ann Lobdell) was F2M transgenderist born in 1829, and lived as a married man on the frontier.
- Albert Cashier was one of at least 240 F2M transgenderists who served in the Union Army during the Civil War.
- Ernest Boulton (Stella) and Frederick Park (Fanny) were discovered at the Strand Theatre in London on April 28 1870. The scandalous “Boulton and Park Affair” went to trial. It was determined that their appearances as women was a “harmless diversion” and the pair were acquitted.
- D. This is attributed to Magnus Hirschfeld, MD in the 1930’s, though a few have attributed this to Harry Benjamin, MD in the 1950’s instead.
- Virginia Prince is credited with coining the word “transgender”, though at the time the term simply meant cross dressing and cross living individuals who have no intention of obtaining sexual reassignment surgery. In the 1990’s, activists used “transgender” as an “umbrella term” to include all sex and gender variant peoples including androgynous people. Today, the term has lost favor as an “umbrella term” in the European Union. There, the trend is to use “trans” as an umbrella term instead.
- Karl Heinrich Ulrichs used a different taxonomy for gender-variant people in a series of 5 tracts published in 1864 and 1865. His taxonomy included “Urning” to describe those with female psyches in male bodies and “Zwitter” to describe intersex people.
- Karl-Maria Kertbeny is thought to have introduced the term “homosexual” in a pamphlet published in 1869.