In the 1930s, after the upheavals and urban cultural experimentation sparked by Prohibition had allowed gay life to become remarkably integrated into the broader cultural life of New York, a series of measures were enacted to exclude homosexuality from the public sphere—the city’s cafés, bars, streets, and theaters—where authorities feared it threatened to disrupt public order and the reproduction of normative gender and sexual arrangements. This chapter examines the tactics used by gay men in early twentieth-century New York City to claim space for themselves in the face of the battery of laws and informal practices designed to exclude them from urban space altogether. It challenges the myths that govern most thinking about gay life before Stonewall, particularly the myths that gay people before the 1960s inevitably remained isolated from one another, invisible to straight people and to other gay people alike, or confined to the most marginalized and hidden of urban spaces.