Category:
1930s

Would-Be Test-Tube Mothers of the 1930s

1939: Having filed for divorce from her husband, Mrs. Virginia Cleary announced that she was seeking a "perfect specimen of manhood" in order to father a "test tube" baby with her. Never mind that the technology for this didn't exist, and wouldn't for another four decades.

She consulted with a doctor to determine what qualities the father of her "eugenic baby" would need to have:

  1. Between 28 and 32 years of age;
  2. Athletic in type, preferably light-haired;
  3. Unmarried, good habits, moderate in smoking and drinking;
  4. Strong, well-formed features;
  5. Strong personality, good ancestral background;
  6. Weight between 160 and 175 pounds.



San Francisco Examiner - Apr 26, 1939



Inspired by the example of Mrs. Cleary, Jean Gordon came forward and announced that she too wanted to mother a "test tube baby."

Des Moines Tribune - Apr 28, 1939

Posted By: Alex - Sun Sep 25, 2022 - Comments (4)
Category: Babies, 1930s

The New Eyelashes

Modern Mechanics - July 1932

Posted By: Alex - Wed Sep 21, 2022 - Comments ()
Category: Fashion, 1930s, Eyes and Vision

5000 Hedgehogs Needed

I do not believe this mystery has ever been definitively solved.

Source of first clipping: The Guardian (London, Greater London, England) 07 Oct 1935, Mon Page 7



Source of second clipping: The Guardian (London, Greater London, England) 09 Oct 1935, Wed Page 9


Source of third clipping: Western Morning News (Plymouth, Devon, England) 05 Jan 1937, Tue Page 4

Posted By: Paul - Fri Sep 09, 2022 - Comments (1)
Category: Animals, Unsolved Mysteries, 1930s, United Kingdom

Watch out for falling babies

While Joseph Figlock was walking down the street, minding his own business, he twice had a baby fall from an overhead window onto his head. It first happened in 1937, and then again in 1938.

Bad luck for him, but good luck for the kids who landed on him.

Detroit Free Press - Sep 28, 1938

Posted By: Alex - Sun Sep 04, 2022 - Comments (2)
Category: Babies, Synchronicity and Coincidence, 1930s

Follies of the Madmen #540

Not sure how pajamas could cause or cure bow-leggedness...

Source.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Aug 21, 2022 - Comments (5)
Category: Fashion, Advertising, 1930s, Men

Fur-bearing Trout




In 1935, a newspaper article revealed the supposed existence of "fur-bearing trout."


Article source: Napa Journal (Napa, California) 17 Feb 1935, Sun Page 4

Then humorist Robert Benchley wrote a piece on it.


Article source: Cumberland Evening Times (Cumberland, Maryland) 23 Feb 1935, Sat Page 3

Since then, the legend continues to resurface, down to the present day.




Article source: Lansing State Journal (Lansing, Michigan) 03 May 1964, Sun Page 70







Posted By: Paul - Thu Aug 18, 2022 - Comments (1)
Category: Cryptozoology, Hoaxes and Imposters and Imitators, Lakes, Ponds, Rivers, Streams, Swamps and Other Bodies of Fresh Water, Fish, 1930s, North America

Does college turn young women into communists?

Back in the 1930s families were concerned about whether they should send their young daughters off to college, fearing they might come home infected with communism. So in 1934, psychologist Stephen M. Corey set out to determine whether such fears were justified.

Corey administered the Thurstone Attitude Scale to 234 female freshmen at the University of Wisconsin, examining their attitudes with respect to six topics: Reality of God, War, Patriotism, Communism, Evolution, and Church. A year later he retested 100 of these students when they were sophomores.

Godless communists?


When he presented his findings at the Midwestern Psychological Association convention in May 1940, he assured everyone that it was safe to send young women to college, saying, "There was no great difference in the girls' attitudes. The average co-ed apparently would rather mix with stag lines than picket lines."

He also emphasized that the young women lost none of their feminine habits at college. A United Press reporter paraphrased his words:

He found that in general college did little to upset or change a co-ed's home training but that she might learn to apply her makeup better, dress better and talk better. "But she won't talk about Communism — college offers too many other diversions."

However, if you look at his 1940 article in the Journal of Social Psychology*, in which he published the results of his study, you find somewhat different information. There he revealed that after a year at college the attitudes of the young women did change slightly, but consistently, in the direction of liberalism — which is to say that they showed less sympathy for god, war, patriotism, and the church, and more sympathy for communism and evolution.



Corey wrote in that article, "The opinions of the students appeared to have undergone at least a degree of liberalization during their one year of attendance at a University."

I guess he wasn't actually lying to the folks at the Midwestern Psychological Association. It's all how you choose to spin the data.

San Bernardino County Sun - May 5, 1940




* Corey, S.M. (1940). "Changes in the opinions of female students after one year at university." The Journal of Social Psychology, 11: 341-351.

Posted By: Alex - Wed Aug 17, 2022 - Comments (4)
Category: Psychology, 1930s, Women, Universities, Colleges, Private Schools and Academia

Melvin Purvis’s G-Men Detective Game

Play along with current headlines!



The object of the game is to capture the Public Enemy. The player who brings a G-Man together with the Public Enemy wins the game. The game starts with one G-Man chasing the public enemy, but after 30 minutes a second can be brought into play.


More pix and info here.

Melvin Purvis at Wikipedia.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Aug 13, 2022 - Comments ()
Category: Crime, Games, 1930s

United States v. 350 Cartons of Canned Sardines

This case is known in legal circles primarily because of its odd name.

It occurred in 1934 and involved 350 cartons of canned sardines shipped from California to Pennsylvania. The FDA examined some of the cans at its lab in Washington DC and decided that they contained "decomposed animal substance." Therefore, it ordered all 350 cartons to be destroyed.

The sardine company challenged this order in court. It lost the initial case, but won on appeal. Though, by that time, two years later, the sardines may already have been destroyed.

As far as I can tell, the case represented a power struggle between the California inspectors (who had approved the fish for shipment) and the federal ones. The FDA's decision seems to have been somewhat arbitrary. Its inspector decided the fish were decomposed not because of how they smelled or tasted. He said they smelled fine. He concluded they were 'decomposed' simply because they looked slightly pink — which was probably because they had been cooked in tomato sauce.

Read more about the case here.

Case and Comment - Autumn 1934

Posted By: Alex - Wed Jul 13, 2022 - Comments (2)
Category: Odd Names, Lawsuits, 1930s

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

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