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Category Archives: Snapshots

Miss Beautiful, 1921 (International Women’s Day)

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Below are two images:  The first is the line-up for the 1921 Miss America pageant, and the second is the winner, Miss Margaret Gorman.  The first Miss America Beauty Pageant was calling a spade a spade:  What they try to pass off as a “scholarship” program nowadays is a sad joke; but in the line of women shown below, I see something else besides honesty:  Diversity.

Since the 1980s I really couldn’t tell you what the differences were between the winner and the losers – all have to fit a particular body type, height, & weight before they’ll even be accepted into the modern beauty pageant; they don’t even need talents – just a good producer mixing their vocals so they can lip-sync to the musical talent portion (my cousin was one such producer, so that’s straight from the horses’ mouth).

Back in 1921, however, the variety of candidates proves that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and each young lady was unique.  Personally, I think a primary ingredient in beauty has been stifled beneath the image that media tries to sell women:  Diversity.  This past week was the International Women’s Day, and I think it’s a good opportunity to remind each woman that uniqueness, not conformity to an impossible image, is beautiful.

1921 - First Miss America Pageant

Margaret Gorman, First Miss America (of 1921)

Margaret Gorman, First Miss America (of 1921) — Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

Look, Ma! No Ropes!

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Painting the Eifel Tower, 1932

Painting the Eifel Tower, 1932

Snapshot in History: A Lethal… Photo

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Colt 38  Camera

New York, 1938 – The image is of a Colt 38, adapted to carry a small camera that automatically takes a picture when you pull the trigger.   To the left of the gun is a strip of 6 photos taken by the camera.

I assume that using such a camera was a good way to get yourself in the headlines – as a statistic.  Either the police or the mob would have had trigger-fingers back in the 30’s in New York, Chicago, or any other big city with mob or gang territorial issues…  but to each his own camera brand I guess!


Snapshot in History: The Baby Cage

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This photo (taken ca. 1937) was the solution busy city dwellers had for their children:  A good dose of fresh air and sunshine, dangling out of a window a few stories high.  To see a British ad for this device, just click on the photo below.

Baby cage

Snapshot in History: the Bulletproof Vest

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Bulletproof Vests

Testing a bulletproof vest, 1923.  Talk about a trust issue…

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