History of Gay and Lesbian Life in Wisconsin - Businesses - Bars and Clubs

Gay 90's
Location: 1339 N. 3rd St., Milwaukee (1945-1950)
756 N. Plankinton, Milwaukee (1950-1954)
433 W. Michigan, Milwaukee (1954-1968)



Male/ female
Bar/ social



Web site contributor 'Bunny' remembered the "Old Gay 90s" as being a piano bar and showtunes place next door to the Royal Hotel. This was not necessarily a gay bar but it was most definitely a gay hangout.

Research by Michail Takach found the "Gay 90's" bars was in three locations over its life, with registered owners as shown:

    Old Gay 90s; 1339 N 3rd St (1945-1950) - owners Gordy Tobin & Jonny Sermon
    Gay 90s; 756 N Plankinton (1950-1954) - owner Gordy Tobin
    Gay 90s; 433 W Michigan (1954-1968) - owner Ben 'The Baron' Siegel

Somehow, none of these iterations ever made it into one of the national "gay guides". Perhaps the editors thought the contributor's submission was a joke or hoax because of the name!

The 1950's incarnation also had food available (as indicated by the January 1950 advertisement to the right).

The final location was also known as "Baron's Gay 90s". It was open until the block was cleared in 1968 for parking for the Royal Hotel.

More information about this business is welcomed from anyone who can contribute it.

Variouis advertisements from 1950 for the new location on Plankinton Avenue
Article about the bar opening under
Baron's ownership;
Advertisement, August 1954
Article about the great business
the bar is doing;
"Flames or No Flames... Open for Business"
Advertisement; (circa 1950-1954)
Article snippet, date unknown
Night time photo, the lights on Michigan Street
(circa 1954-1966)

One of only two known photos
as "Baron's Gay 90s'"
circa 1960

Advertisement, October 1945
(Milwaukee Journal)

Advertisement, January 1950
(Milwaukee Journal)

Credits: Web site concept, design and arrangement by Don Schwamb.
Information, photos and advertisements researched and contributed by Michail Takach.
Last updated: May-2021.

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