Science fiction fandom, 1970’s cosplay, and documenting furry origins

by Patch O'Furr

(Flayrah news: 4/4/2012)

On io9, Ron Miller posted a gallery of his photos of Cosplayers from 1970’s science fiction conventions. (NSFW)

This subculture spun off Furries, and it made me wonder if any proto-furry costumes were included. The closest I saw were a bird-woman and insect characters, who could be described as anthropomorphic, but not “furry”.

What are the earliest records of organized furry activities? I’d guess these are somewhat underexposed and could be better documented [Yarf #46 (Jan 1997)].

It could be interesting and fun to keep the stories alive, as science fiction fans do. It could better define identity by those using the very loose label “furry”, instead of outsiders in less than welcome ways. It could also be timely, after a decade-plus of convention growth that has brought more cons and con-goers than ever.

Out of curiosity, I contacted Ron Miller and asked him to respond to this post, in case he has more photos or comments. I noticed that he just found and commented about this archive of Science Fiction fandom that goes back to 1939. Perhaps some helpful reader may dig into it and find more to add.