NPR logo Gay Couples Marry in Massachusetts

Gay Couples Marry in Massachusetts

State First in Country to Allow Same-Sex Weddings

NPR's Tovia Smith reports for 'Morning Edition'

Only Available in Archive Formats.

After a 12-year courtship, Brent Sverdloff, left, and Craig St. Clair of Brookline, Mass., were married Monday. Julia Redpath Buckley, NPR hide caption

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Julia Redpath Buckley, NPR

Peg Prible and Robyn Ochs, the first same-sex couple to marry in Brookline, Mass. Julia Redpath Buckley, NPR hide caption

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Julia Redpath Buckley, NPR

As same-sex couples lined up for marriage licenses, some protested the practice outside Cambridge's City Hall. Julia Redpath Buckley, NPR hide caption

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Julia Redpath Buckley, NPR

Six months after Massachusetts' highest court ruled that gay and lesbian couples have the right to marry, cities and towns across the state are issuing the nation's first marriage-license applications to same-sex couples.

It marks a major milestone for gay and lesbian rights; Massachusetts joins the Netherlands, Belgium and three Canadian provinces as the only places in the world where gays can marry.

By state law, couples have to wait three days to marry, but many have obtained court-waivers which allow them to marry sooner.

Many same-sex couples from out of state will also start seeking marriage licenses in Massachusetts, which will likely trigger a series of court challenges across the country over whether the licenses will be recognized in the other 49 states.