top of page

The Stonewall Inn: Revolution and Resilience in Greenwich Village

Greenwich Village has often been the stage for movements and moments that challenge the status quo. One such cornerstone, both architecturally and historically, is the Stonewall Inn. Beyond its brick facade lies a legacy of defiance, hope, and a turning point for LGBTQ+ rights, with figures like Marsha P. Johnson paving the way for a brighter, more inclusive future.

You can hear more New York City stories with Gesso’s self-guided New York audio walking tours, which you can experience at your own pace.

Exterior shot of the neon red Stonewall Inn sign in Greenwich Village New York with rainbow colored lights hanging in front of the sign

The history of the building predates its revolutionary role. Built in the 1840s, the structure initially served as stables. Over the years, it transitioned through various identities. The late 1960s saw the establishment evolve into the Stonewall Inn we recognize today. It operated as a gay bar, albeit under the shadow of frequent police raids, as homosexuality was still criminalized in many parts of the US.

However, it wasn't just another raid that etched June 28, 1969 into history; it was the collective cry for justice and equality. On this fateful night, the community, tired of oppression, retaliated. This led to the Stonewall Riots—a series of confrontations that would catalyze the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement.

Central to this uprising was Marsha P. Johnson, a Black transgender activist leading the way. With her indomitable spirit, she stood at the forefront, championing the cause and ensuring that the struggles of the marginalized weren’t in vain.

The Stonewall Inn's influence on Greenwich Village, and indeed the world, is profound. It's not just a bar but a beacon of resistance and resilience. Today, it stands as a National Historic Landmark, and every year, the streets around it come alive during the Pride Parade, a vivid reminder of the battles fought and the victories achieved.

Discover more local history with our New York audio walking tours, and see which nearby New York City neighborhoods you want to explore next.


Gesso is your ultimate companion for exploring the world through audio tours that unfold as you walk around cities. Find audio tours on the Gesso app, available via the App Store or Google Play, and share your New York City adventures with us on Instagram.


bottom of page