History


Glad Day Bookshop was created in 1970. This makes it not only the world's oldest surviving LGBTQ bookstore but also Toronto's oldest surviving bookstore. We believe we have the largest collection of LGBTQ titles in the world. Story, representation and freedom of speech are critical elements of queer & trans culture and identity – our bookstore is an important place that supports, nurtures and inspires creativity and community.

Glad Day Bookshop is supported by a number of amazing shareholders. Some of these folks are:
Aisha Fairclough          Alan Li                    Brad Pyne           Doug Kerr
Gein Wong                     Jill Andrew            Keith Wong        Karim G R Ladak
Kim Katrin Milan          Lisa Gore Duplessis                          Marcus McCann
Michael Erickson         Michael Went        Spencer Charles Smith
Sarah Hunter                Tom Cho                 Troy Jackson     Tycoda Gilecki

 

 

A Brief History taken from Wikipedia:
"Opened in 1970 by Jearld Moldenhauer, it was the city's and Canada's first bookstore targeted to the gay community. The bookstore originally operated out of Moldenhauer's apartment in The Annex, which also served as the original offices of The Body Politic.[1] Moldenhauer later moved to a house in Kensington Market, where the bookstore and magazine operated out of a shed in his backyard.[1] The store moved to its current location in 1981.

In 1979, Moldenhauer opened a second location in Boston. A fire destroyed the Boston building in 1982, but the store reopened in a different location a few weeks later.[2]

Norman Laurila, an employee of Glad Day in the 1970s, moved with his partner Richard Labonté and friend George Leigh in 1979 to Los Angeles, where the trio established an influential LGBT bookstore of their own, A Different Light.

Moldenhauer sold the Toronto location to John Scythes in 1991, but retained ownership of the Boston store and continued to be involved in the Toronto store's operations.[2] After the Boston store's landlord decided to convert the building into condominiums, Moldenhauer closed the store in 2000 when he and manager John Mitzel faced difficulty finding a suitable new location.[3]

The Toronto location remains open, and is currently managed by Scott Dagostino. Since the closure of New York City's Oscar Wilde Bookshop in early 2009, Glad Day is now the oldest surviving LGBT bookstore in North America.[1] In late 2011, Scythes announced that he was putting the store up for sale due to declining revenues;[4] the store was ultimately purchased by a collective of community members."

In 2016, Glad Day Bookshop moved to 499 Church Street to a new wheelchair accessible location, adding coffee, cocktails and food to the mix. Now it's a bookstore, coffee shop, cocktail bar, event space and dance club.

This new location and model is a flexible, inclusive space that is being used by the diverse LGBTQ communities of Toronto to amplify creativity, story, sexuality, liberation and love.

 

How Glad Day Bookshop was created, by it's founder Jearld Moldenhauer:
http://www.jearldmoldenhauer.com/canadian-gay-movement/glad-day-bookshop-toronto/