np: [ca. mid-1980s]. Square folio brown faux-leather contemporary commercial album. Containing 97 color photographs loosely inserted in compartmented plastic sleeves (six to a page). Most 3"x 5", some smaller, with some Poloroids. A couple of images trimmed, a few more creased. Some annotations to versos. Else well-preserved. Easily very good or better overall. Very good +. Item #22145
Large collection of almost 100 color photographs of various cross-dressers assembled by "Marilyn" (addressed on versos of several photos), likely a fellow enthusiast. With only minor repetition of subjects, and many photos stamped (with names, addresses) or inscribed on their versos (several lengthy), this collections appears to be less a portrait of a local community or established circle and more that of a practitioner reaching out through the mail, undoubtedly through zines and personal ads. Further, to this cataloguer at least, these images seem to document primarily neither drag, gay, nor transgender subjects, but instead to be of a more fetishistic bent — though obviously with some overlap. As the caption on one photo reads: "I really love to wear very sexy, sheer, silly, bra, panties, garter belts, sheer stockings, high heel slippers & flowing full length sheer negligee. I feel so much like a very sensuous feminine shemale then." A smaller section (24 total) of sexually explicit images segregated at the end of the album lends further credence this view. Dated photos converge around the mid-eighties, a period when cross-dressing was still poorly accepted. Indeed, the height of the AIDS crisis must have contributed to a feeling of even greater isolation, with underground communications such as these often providing the only outlet for fellowship. A valuable document from a sexually marginalized community.