“I Feel Pride—I Guess I’m Entitled”
—Jim Bennett and Deacon Maccubbin
Maccubbin, 72, owned Lambda Rising, an LGBT bookstore near Dupont Circle that was open from 1974 to 2010. His husband, Jim Bennett, 59, headed up retail for 18 years. In ’75, Maccubbin (right) helped organize Gay Pride Day, a block party that drew 2,000 revelers. Forty years later, it has grown into Capital Pride, an annual festival that this past June attracted some 250,000 people.
Maccubbin: “When I opened the first store in 1974, we were in a townhouse on 20th Street. When you walked in off the street, no one knew where you were going. You could turn right into the tobacco shop or left into the bookstore, or you could keep going up the stairs. When we moved to S Street in ’79, we were in a storefront with big windows. Some people said, ‘Are you going to put curtains in?’ Walking into a gay bookstore was a threat to them. It was a very different time. We had windows smashed. We had bomb threats. But we kept opening our doors every day.”