BirthMarsha P. Johnson was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey on August 24, 1945.
Her birth name was Malcolm Michaels Jr.
Wearing girl's clothesAt five years old, she started playing around and dressing up in girls’ clothes.
Boys in her neighborhood would make fun of her so she stopped wearing dresses.
Her parents, particularly her mother, were unsupportive of homosexuality.
GraduationIn 1963, she graduated from Edison High School, which is now named Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Academy.
Black MarshaAfter graduation, she moved to Greenwich Village, New York City in 1966 and became a prostitute and a drag performer. Her first drag queen name was Black Marsha.
She changed her drag queen name to Marsha P. Johnson which was derived from the restaurant Howard Johnson’s.
The “P” in Marsha P. Johnson stood for “Pay it no mind.” which is her answer to questions about her gender.
Stonewall InnJohnson said she was one of the first drag queens to go to the Stonewall Inn, after they began allowing women and drag queens inside; it was previously a bar for only gay men.
On the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, the Stonewall uprising occurred. While the first two nights of rioting were the most intense, the clashes with police would result in a series of spontaneous demonstrations and marches through the gay neighborhoods of Greenwich Village for roughly a week afterwards.
Gay Liberation FrontAfter the Stonewall uprising, two gay activist organizations and three pro-LGBT newspapers were established in New York within six months.
Marsha joined the Gay Liberation Front.The first gay pride marches happened on the first anniversary of the Stonewall uprising.
In New York, Marsha participated in the first Christopher Street Liberation Pride.
Hot PeachesBeginning 1972 until the 90s, Marsha P. Johnson was in a drag performance group in New York named Hot Peaches.
Hot Peaches was J. Camicias’ international drag troupe.
Marsha also performed with East Coast drag troupe The Angels of Light.
STAR HouseIn 1972, Johnson and Rivera, a very good friend of Marsha, put up the STAR House he (Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries) organization, which is a shelter for homeless LGBT people and supported some of the most vulnerable members of the community.
Marsha P.Johnson was known as the “drag mother” in STAR House.
Andie Warhol photographsIn 1974, Marsha P Johnson was photographed by the famous artist Andy Warhol, as part of his series "ladies and gentlemen" by polaroids de dragqueens. Johnson was also part of the group of dragqueens for Warhol performances.
DeadMarsha’s body was discovered floating in the Hudson River a few weeks after the 1992 pride parade.
Her death was first ruled as suicide but her friends insisted that Marsha was not suicidal.
Marsha was cremated and her ashes were carried to the Hudson River.