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Monday, October 27, 2014

Castro Can Celebrate History Walk Now That All Plaques Are Spelled Correctly

Posted By on Mon, Oct 27, 2014 at 12:11 PM

click to enlarge christine_jorgensen-plaque-3-color.jpg
Now that those embarrassing typos have been fixed on two of the plaques on Castro Street's Rainbow Honor Walk, the folks at the Honor Walk can finally cut the ribbon on that project. 

Each of the 20 plaques now etched into the sidewalk of the Castro shopping district recalls an important figure in LGBT history. Only after the plaques were installed back in September did anyone notice the glaring errors. Two plaques had to be uninstalled and corrected. 

David Perry, founder of The Rainbow Honor Walk, tells SF Weekly that the corrections were made at no cost to the city.
"The City is not the producer of the plaques," Perry said. "The nonprofit Rainbow Honor Walk raised $100,000. The corrected plaques were fabricated at no additional cost by the manufacturer due to the small typos in the first two plaques."

He then emphasized that the typos were minor. 

The reinstalled plaques honor the memories of Oscar Wilde and Christine Jorgensen.  Wilde was a British playwright and wit during the late 19th century. His career was destroyed after he served jail time for the "crime" of being gay. Jorgensen, a former GI born George Jorgensen, made international headlines after undergoing sex reassignment surgery in 1952. She spent the rest of her life advocating for equality through writing and public speaking. She also sang in nightclubs. 

click to enlarge oscarwilde-plaque-2-color.jpg

But Wilde's original plaque referred to the raconteur's "bitting" wit, while Jorgensen's plaque left out the "S" in transgendered, spelling the word "trangendered". Today, you can walk down the street and see that Wilde is now honored for his "biting" wit.

The organization will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Oct. 30 party which will include a blessing from the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. The street will be closed from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Perry said that more plaques would be added in the future. Hopefully, a proofreader will be on hand.

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