Category:
1930s

Mystery Illustration 54



Who was this eminent personage?

The answer is here.

And after the jump.

More in extended >>

Posted By: Paul - Wed Aug 16, 2017 - Comments (4)
Category: Celebrities, Couples, 1930s

JFK as Angel




Source of text.


Regretably, the only image I could find has this watermark hiding some of the details.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Aug 09, 2017 - Comments (4)
Category: Religion, Statues and Monuments, 1930s, 1960s, Europe

Big-Mouthed Boy

Young Leonard Hanstein, aka Big-Mouthed Boy, had a talent for stuffing things in his mouth.

Pittsburgh Press - Apr 30, 1939



Detroit Free Press - July 9, 1939



Sheboygan Press - Apr 13, 1939





Drew Friedman included a caricature of Hanstein in his book Sideshow Freaks (2011), and claimed that Hanstein made a living for a while by displaying his talent.





I came across a columnist (below) musing in 1969 about what might have happened to Hanstein, but the question went unanswered. The only other biographical info I can find about Hanstein is that he died in 1994 at the age of 70, still living in Oklahoma.

Fairbanks Daily News - Feb 22, 1969

Posted By: Alex - Thu Aug 03, 2017 - Comments (6)
Category: Human Marvels, 1930s

The Orgatron, or, Tote-a-Tune









Ad source.

Another pre-digital electronic keyboard.

Some background here.

And here.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Jul 28, 2017 - Comments (4)
Category: Music, Technology, 1930s, 1970s

Self-Propelled Aquaplane

It looks like the guy is about to send the girl flying into the air, but apparently he was demonstrating some kind of water rescue device, not a rocket.

"S. Shapiro, inventor, strapping his Shapson aquaplane on Miss Margaret Travis for demonstration at Santa Monica, Cal. The model is 44 inches over all and is operated by cranks which the swimmer turns to propel the plane. A speed of 12 knots can be obtained." — Chicago Tribune - Mar 3, 1935



East Liverpool Evening Review - Mar 1, 1935

Posted By: Alex - Mon Jul 24, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Inventions, 1930s

The Maid of Cotton Pageant

Continuing our intermittent look at oddball beauty pageants.

The Maid of Cotton pageant began in 1939. The annual pageant was sponsored by the National Cotton Council (NCC), Memphis Cotton Carnival, and the Cotton Exchanges of Memphis, New York, and New Orleans. The pageant was held in Memphis, Tennessee, in conjunction with the Carnival until the 1980s.

In mid-December every year the NCC released a list of contestants. Contestants were required to have been born in one of the cotton-producing states: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, North and South Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas or Virginia. They might have also been born in the cotton-producing counties of Alexander, Jefferson, Massac, Pulaski, Williamson or Madison, Illinois or in Clark or Nye counties of Nevada. There were usually twenty contestants each year.

Contestants were judged on personality, good manners, intelligence, and family background as well as beauty and an ability to model. A Top Ten were chosen and then a Top Five, and finally second and first runners up and a winner. Winners served as goodwill and fashion ambassadors of the cotton industry in a five-month, all-expense tour of American cities. In the mid-1950s the tour expanded globally. In the late 1950s a Little Miss Cotton pageant was begun but lasted only until 1963 before being discontinued. In the mid-1980s Dallas,Texas took over the pageant, in conjunction with the NCC and its overseas division, Cotton Council International. In 1986, to bolster interest and participation, the NCC eliminated the rule requiring contestants to be born in a cotton-producing state. The pageant was discontinued in 1993, one of the reasons being that Cotton Inc. stopped contributing scholarship money as well as waning public interest and changing marketing strategies.


More details here.

And also here.

The 1952 winner.

Source.



Posted By: Paul - Fri Jul 21, 2017 - Comments (3)
Category: Beauty, Ugliness and Other Aesthetic Issues, Contests, Races and Other Competitions, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s

Toilet Tissue Illness

In the late 1920s and early 1930s, Scott Tissues ran an advertising campaign that sought to convince the American public that there was such a thing as 'Toilet Tissue Illness,' and that it was one of the great public health crises of the time. Toilet Tissue Illness was caused by using cheap toilet paper. It could lead to serious complications, possibly requiring rectal surgery to fix. So the ads suggested.

The most notorious ad in the campaign was the 'black glove' ad below.



Here's some background info about the Scott Tissue campaign from Richard Smyth's Bum Fodder: An Absorbing History of Toilet Paper:

The image is stark: a clinically white sheet, an array of gleaming surgical instruments, and a hand, clad in a glove of thick black rubber. 'Often the only relief from toilet tissue illness,' the slogan reads (managing to suggest that 'toilet tissue illness' is a recognised medical condition). Consumers who managed to get past the photo and slogan without dropping everything and running for the high hills were then subjected to another lecture from the haemorrhoid-fixated Scott ad-men. It's the usual litany: 'Astonishing percentage of rectal cases ... traceable to inferior toilet paper ... protect your family's health ... eliminate a needless risk.' The words are so much prattle — but the image of the black rubber glove lingers in the mind. Following criticism from the American Medical Association, Scott eventually back-tracked on its doom-laden claims — but pledged to undertake trials in order to prove beyond dispute that 'improperly made toilet tissue is a menace to health'.

And a few of the other ads featured in the campaign:



Posted By: Alex - Thu Jul 20, 2017 - Comments (4)
Category: Health, Advertising, 1920s, 1930s

Murder by Flypaper





Original story here.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Jul 19, 2017 - Comments (6)
Category: Death, Scary Criminals, Children, 1930s

Celery Bikini

Another plant-themed bikini. This time it's Evelyn Hayes who, as "Celery Queen" of National City, CA in 1939, got to wear a celery bikini.

Though, again, it wouldn't yet have been called a bikini. More like a celery hula skirt and top.

Pittsburgh Press - Apr 2, 1939

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jul 16, 2017 - Comments (9)
Category: Fashion, 1930s

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Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.

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