An Oral History of Wall Street

Erica Thompson
Scot Hafler and Michele Chaney (aka DJ Mitch)

The culture is changing. Gay clubs and bars are dwindling throughout the nation. Depending on whom you ask, Columbus had between 30 and 40 at its peak.

Though there are fewer gay-owned spaces — only one lesbian bar, Slammers, remains — the community is finding new ways to keep those legacies alive. Performers and DJs who got their start in now-abandoned or repurposed buildings can be found at bars like AWOL in Olde Towne East or Cavan Irish Pub on the South Side.

Others are focusing more on creating events like the monthly “Queer Bomb” dance party at Two Truths, which defies old labels that never fit trans and gender non-conforming communities.

Still, some acknowledge a void. People reminisce about the old dance clubs Downtown, especially Wall Street, once located, aptly enough, at 144 N. Wall Street. From 1987 to 2015, the establishment brought all facets of the LGBTQ community together and hosted everyone from drag kings to burlesque performers — all while landing on the radar of celebrities and out-of-town partyers.

Continue reading on Columbus Alive.