(The) Warehouse

206 South Jefferson

The story of house music culture begins here. A narrow building made of cream brick accented with green art deco diamonds, 206 South Jefferson hosted an all-night, members-only juice bar between 1977 and 1982. Promoter Robert Williams, as well as a team of financial backers and co-promoters, produced the parties there in concert with DJ Frankie Knuckles and his primarily queer, Black, and Latino audiences. At the venue’s peak, Williams would squeeze around 2,000 patrons into just 3,000 square feet—a space roughly the size of a suburban home— and two thirds of the venue’s real estate was above or below the dance floor. Despite its relatively small size, Warehouse patrons remember the venue as being a space of immeasurable social expansiveness.



Sitting outside 206 South Jefferson

David Risqué remembers sitting outside The Warehouse listening to Frankie Knuckles with Farley Keith and Steve Hurley, all of them too scared to go in because it was a gay party.

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