Green’s Dictionary of Slang

drag queen n.

also queen, queen drag
[drag n.1 (8a) + -queen sfx (2); also in attrib. use]

1. an effeminate homosexual who prefers to dress as a woman; sometimes as a professional female impersonator.

[US]‘Swasarnt Nerf’ et al. Gay Girl’s Guide 8: drag-queen: One who makes a living doing female impersonations in a drag-show, or otherwise appears frequently in drag.
[US]W. Burroughs Naked Lunch (1968) 24: A fat queen drag walking his Afghan hound.
[US]H. Selby Jar. Last Exit to Brooklyn 215: Harry [...] looked more closely at the queens on the floor. He was surprised, though he knew they were men, how much they looked like women.
[US]L. Bruce How to Talk Dirty 33: The drag queen said he paid $12 [...] for the sequins alone.
[Can]R. Caron Go-Boy! 18: Lovers Lane, the sleeping quarters of the drag queens who were only too willing to spread their wares around.
[UK]Flame : a Life on the Game 53: I wondered [...] whether his experiences with a thirteen year old drag queen had been too much for him.
[Aus]R.G. Barrett You Wouldn’t Be Dead for Quids (1989) 197: A bloke. A rotten fuckin’ drag-queen.
[US](con. 1930s) Kennedy & Davies Boots of Leather (2014) 42: [The police] just [took] the drag queens, the ones that were putting on the show.
[UK]D. Jarman diary 17 Jan. Smiling in Slow Motion (2000) 295: He is unsure about the make-up, says it makes him look like a drag queen.
[Aus](con. 1964-65) B. Thorpe Sex and Thugs and Rock ’n’ Roll 2: That June of ’63 King’s Cross was [...] brothels, hookers, pimps, hoons, charity molls, spruikers, toffs, chats, mooks, lairs, mugs, phizgigs, drag queens, straights, shines, bent cops, [...] tea leaves, neon, glitz.
[UK]Guardian Travel 8 Jan. 4: 20 drag queens, 70 dancers and incandescent pyrotechnics.
[Aus]R.G. Barrett Leaving Bondi (2013) [ebook] Unless I want to chase drag queens round Long Bay [Jail].
[US]J. McCourt ‘Vilja de Tanquay Exults’ in Queer Street 310: I must be a female impersonator / A ’Dilly drag queen on the game.
[Aus]C. Rawlings-Way Sydney 199/2: Hosted by wonderfully glam drag queens such as Tora Hymen.
[UK]J.J. Connolly Viva La Madness 75: Bridget looks like a female bodybuilder — hard boat, drag queen calves.
[US]Baltimore Sun (MD) 3 June T4/2: Give me Drag Queens, give me strippers, give me sass and magic!
[US]J. Ellroy Widespread Panic 27: [D]rag queens shopping for extra-long nylons.

2. (also dragster) a female impersonator.

[US]Lavender Lex. n.p.: drag queen: – [...] This term is also used to describe female impersonators.
[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular.
[Aus]J. Byrell (con. 1959) Up the Cross 125: Most [country dwellers] had never copped a dekko at a real life dragster.

3. in fig. use, as a general insult.

[Aus]M.B. ‘Chopper’ Read How to Shoot Friends 83: To think that these drag queens have been standing in the shadows of fantasy for so long they can no longer see the daylight of reality.