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9. Harvey Milk at Castro Camera, San Francisco, CA, c. 1973,
photo by Scott Smith

Harvey kept joking as usual, but by the end of 1972, both he and Scott knew they had to get serious. Their income tax refunds were running out. They needed to find a cheap place to live. They heard that apartments were cheap over on Castro Street, the main strip in an old Irish neighborhood gone to seed. Two gay bars there were doing booming business catering to gay hippies like themselves. They moved into a Castro Street apartment and tried to figure out what to do for money. Harvey had the brainstorm when he dropped off a roll of film at a neighborhood pharmacy, only to have the pictures come back ruined. They would open a camera store, he told Scott enthusiastically.

Randy Shilts, The Mayor of Castro Street, St. Martin's Press, 1982

Castro Camera opened at 575 Castro Street on March 3, 1973.