Stories from Black Trans History
From Trans-Giriot a post on Black trans history in the US. The story of Jim McHarris
It starts in his birthplace of Meridian, MS in 1924. He was born as Annie Lee Gordon and his parents died early during his childhood. McHarris was raised by two sets of foster parents and exhibited a distaste for all things feminine except dating the ladies. The young Jim McHarris would often slip away to Jackson to hang out and longtime friend Bishop Smiley Jones noted that young McHarris was not only attracted to women, but preferred mens clothing and living as a man as well. .
He transitioned in his early teens, ditched the female clothing and began in 1939 to move frequently to different cities around the country. McHarris lived in Memphis, Chicago and other midwestern cities living his transmasculine life. In that 15 year period as a restless traveler the 5’ 5” pound McHarris worked as a short order cook, cab driver, gas station attendant, auto mechanic, shipyard worker, and preacher.while continuing with his handsome baby face and husky 175 pound frame to draw attention from and enjoy the companiy of the ladies he was attracted to.