Johnna Ossie



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Frederica 'Bunny' Hart was born in 1930. She spent the first nine years of her life living with her grandparents in Boston. Her mother died when she was three. When she was nine her father remarried and the family moved to Newton Center. She graduated from Junior College in 1950 where she studied History and English. From there, she traveled to New York City to look for work. Bunny first started dating women in the 1950s while she was living in New York. She worked as a stage manager in NYC in a time where it was very difficult for women to have stage managing positions, and eventually grew tired of the harassment she received from men. In 1963 she spent the summer in Ogunquit, Maine working in theater publicity. She spent every summer in Maine until 1968 when she decided to move there full time. It was in Maine that she met her future life partner of 39 years, Sheila. Sheila and her husband each knew the other was gay. Sheila eventually divorced her husband and she and her 9-year-old son moved in with Bunny into the home Bunny still lives in today. In 2008, Sheila passed away from lung cancer. Bunny discusses her work in theater publicity, her relationship with Sheila, being a gay woman in the 1950s and beyond, and her life in Ogunquit.


Please cite as: Querying the Past: LGBTQ Maine Oral History Project Collection, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer+ Collection, Jean Byers Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine, University of Southern Maine Libraries.

For more information about the Querying the Past: Maine LGBTQ Oral History Project, please contact Dr. Wendy Chapkis.


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University of Southern Maine


Ogunquit, Maine


Keywords: Coming out; 1950s; 1960s; 1970s; 1980s; Ogunquit, Maine; New York, New York; Theater, Ogunquit Playhouse; HIV/AIDS; Politics; Boston, Mass; Employment; Generational differences; Dating and relationships, Identity; Age; Loss of partner


History of Gender | Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Oral History | Women's Studies

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Hart, Bunny



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