The past few years have seen a major shift when it comes to issues of transgender visibility and rights.
From the rise of transgender celebrities
, to the federal government's affirmation
that transgender people are protected by law, equality is — if not yet a reality — more achievable than ever.
But trans rights didn't appear out of nowhere. Nor did they only show up once we had begun to achieve victories for gay and lesbian equality. Transgender individuals and allies have been fighting for their rights and their futures for decades, building a foundation for those who are continuing to speak out today.
Refinery29 has collected some of those historical building blocks — from individuals to movements — that have helped build the push for transgender rights that we have today. We'll be adding a new moment every week, so check back to see what else you ought to know.
Click through to read some of the most important moments in transgender history. And please share moments or individuals you think should be considered for inclusion in the comments below.