Here are some of the pioneering transmen that I am aware of. I am sure there are many more. My hope is that this list is just a jumping off place for you to explore further. In case you're wondering why certain "well-known" transgender people are not included in my list, it's because they do not fit "my" definition of a transman (transsexual man), which is often shortened to FtM or FTM or F2M = female TO male, as coined by FtM pioneer Lou Sullivan, because before that we were called "female transsexuals" within the medical and counseling communities. Lou thought that an incorrect description of who/what we are, so he worked tirelessly to change it. He was, obviously, successful!!
Founded FTM International, the first exclusively FTM organization, in 1986, and is considered largely responsible for the modern acknowledgment that sexual orientation and gender identity are totally different concepts. Lou Sullivan was also instrumental in demonstrating the existence of trans men attracted to men (before him gay transguys were systematically denied transition services). He wrote the first guidebook for FTM persons and also a biography of the San Francisco FTM, Jack Bee Garland (listed below).
- First transman to complete phalloplasty procedure (1946-49) in England. Biography about him,The First Man-Made Man by Pagan Kennedy. May 1915 – 15 May 1962
Is the current president of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health(WPATH), the organization responsible for publishing the Standards Of Care For Gender Identity Disorders (SOC). He is also the past president of FTM International (1991 - 1999). Jamison is the author of the award winning book Becoming a Visible Man and contributing author of the recently released FTM anthology Letters for my Brothers: Transitional Wisdom in Retrospect.
Transitioned in the late 1970s and lost his teaching job, he was a gym teacher in Union City, CA (Bay Area). He died of cancer at age 67.
Erickson was a philanthropist who transitioned in 1963 and launched the Erickson Educational Foundation (EEF) in 1964. "Through the EEF, Erickson contributed millions of dollars to the early development of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer movements between 1964 and 1984." "In 1963 Erickson became [the first ftm] patient of Dr. Harry Benjamin." "Erickson's official name change took place in 1963 with the sex change following in 1965, setting legal precedent in the state of Louisiana. [from wikipedia] Erickson contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association, now World Professional Association for Transgender Health.
Patton, a Psychiatric Physician Assistant, was the first trans person to be elected to the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association (HBIGDA). [not a lot of info about him available]
Smith was "a Methodist minister who testified in 1977 at the trial of a KKK murderer, an uncle, becoming a target for the klan. He transitioned in 1981. He published a book naming dozens of people he suggested might have been involved, at great personal risk." [from FTMI website]
"Mario Martino wrote the first full length FTM autobiography, Emergence (1977), about an FTM who successfully transitioned with hormones and surgery. His memoir inspired countless FTM readers. He was a healthcare professional and set up a counseling service along with his wife that guided men through the transition process and answered hundreds of letters from readers with questions about transition." [from FTMI website] Martino also created "The Labyrinth Foundation Counseling Service in the late 1960s in New York, the first transgender community-based organization that specifically addressed the needs of female-to-male transsexuals." [from LGBT Movements in US wikipedia page]
Jack B. Garland (1869 - 1936)"On October 5, 1899, he adopted the male identity of Beebe Beam and accompanied United States Army forces to the Philippines in 1899 to participate in the Philippine War for a year, writing, "I saw war and I lived it." [from wikipedia]
General Historical Information
- Large List of Historical & Contemporary FTM Leaders - http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TSsuccesses/TransMen.html
- Historical Reference of people assigned female at birth, but living as men, and many from prior to the advent of hormonal and surgical options for transition, who were trailblazers - http://www.computerconsultingservices.net/mensworld/mensworld.html
- First National FtM Conference - Was held in 1995, in San Francisco, CA and sponsored by FTM International, founded by Lou Sullivan in 1986, which was under the leadership of Jamison Green from 1991-1999 - http://www.black-rose.com/cuiru/archive/2-1/ftm-jordy.html
- True Spirit Conference - FtM conference held annually from 1996-2000, on the East Coast and sponsored by AmericanBoyz (AmBoyz) a now defunct national FTM organization. Announcement about 2000 conference - http://my.execpc.com/~dmmunson/tsc2k/GeneralInfo.htm
- Continueing the tradition of hosting an annual FtM conference, Aidan Key picked up the slack in 2001 and produced Gender Odyssey (GO). This year GO celebrated its 10th anniversary. http://www.genderodyssey.org/about/
Brief History of Lesbian Feminist Anti-Transsexual Discourses (not entirely eradicated)
- BACKGROUND INFO: Lesbian Feminist Ethicist Janice Raymond created outrage when she wrote Transsexual Empire (1979). Raymond drew on anti-transsexual discourses that had been developing at the grassroots level for nearly a decade. Raymond argued—and many of her readers believed—that transsexuals were the mindless agents of a nefarious patriarchal conspiracy bent on the destruction of women. Raymond characterized female-to-male transsexuals as traitors to their sex and to the cause of feminism, and male-to-female transsexuals as rapists engaged in an unwanted penetration of women's space. She suggested that transsexuals be "morally mandated out of existence." [from LGBT Movements in US wikipedia page]
- Lou Sullivan “A Transvestite Answers A Feminist” in The Transgender Studies Reader. (159-164). [NOT A RESPONSE TO RAYMOND]
- For a response to Raymond's, Transsexual Empire, read transwoman Sandy Stone's, The Empire Strikes Back - http://www.actlab.utexas.edu/~sandy/empire-strikes-back
FtM Booklist (not exhaustive)
Zander Keig, Co-EditorLetters for my Brothers: Transitional Wisdom in Retrospect
An FtM Anthology Featuring Jamison Green & Lou Sullivan
ORDER ONLINE: http://www.lettersformybrothers.com
It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” e.e. cummings