Collection Info

Bird, Frederick

Span Dates: 1998

Volume: Oral history interview #98-049


This interview concerned Bird's involvement with the homophile movement centered in Glide Memorial United Methodist Church in San Francisco in the mid-1960s. The interviewer Paul Gabriel conducted interviews with multiple individuals involved in early gay movement in San Francisco.

Hist/Bio Note

Rev. Fred Bird came from an activist civil rights background, having worked with the black communities of South Boston and voter registration drives in the South. He came to San Francisco in 1964 as pastor of St. John's Methodist Church in North Beach. He helped a poverty program in the central city, focusing on the elderly. Bird was also active in the homophile movement, being one of the ministers who helped organize the New Year's Eve Ball at California Hall in 1964. Bird also spoke at a press conference the following day against the police harrassment he witnessed at the New Year Ball. Later, he was active in Vietnam war protests.

Finding Aid

Online transcripts are available for many of Gabriel's interviews; only a brief description of the interview is available through the following website.


The GLBT Historical Society of Northern California is located in San Francisco.

Index Terms

Council on Religion and the HomosexualUnited Methodist Church (U.S.)CaliforniaSan Francisco [CA]MethodistChurch work with gays -- United StatesClergy -- Political ActivityCouncil on Religion and the Homosexual -- HistoryGay liberation movement -- Religious aspectsGays -- United States -- History -- 20th Century -- SourcesGlide Memorial United Methodist ChurchCromey, Robert WarrenBird, Frederick