Category:
1960s

Miss Sasquatch Queen

At the Sasquatch Winter Carnival in Saskatchewan, they annually elected a "Miss Sasquatch Queen." Laura Medland, below, was the 1969 winner. Note the Sasquatch patch she's wearing.

Regina Leader-Post - Feb 25, 1970



And there seems to have been a rival Miss Sasquatch contest: the Sasquatch queen pageant held at the Regina Inn. Dona Doan, below, won that title in 1969.

So, in 1969 there were two Sasquatch Queens in Saskatchewan.

Regina Leader-Post - Feb 17, 1969

Posted By: Alex - Thu Nov 14, 2019 - Comments (2)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, 1960s

The Songbird Saver

Desmond Slattery (1914-1977) claimed to be a naturalist. But I'm not sure how much scientific training he actually had. I suspect that's just how he rebranded himself after his career in Hollywood fizzled.

His 'Songbird Saver,' which he debuted in 1968, was designed to stop cats from attacking birds by conditioning them to think that, if they did so, the birds would explode. As explained in the LA Times (Jan 23, 1969):

Basically, the Songbird Saver consists of a small dummy bird which, when nudged by a cat for any reason, explodes.
Slattery's own news release describes its effectiveness perhaps more vividly:
"Slipping out of the house, the trainee-cat will make its stealthily stalking approach... Seeing it (the Songbird Saver), apparently frozen with terror, the trainee-cat will pounce upon it, and with the resulting explosion, that cat will go about 9 feet in the air and take off for the high timber before its feet touch the ground."
It is with this simple device that Slattery hopes to save civilization "as we know it."
"Songbirds are vital to our ecology of life," he explained. "Our society could not exist without them. Frankly, in six years we'd be up to our neck in insects."
Slattery emphasized his device is harmless to cats and uses merely the same sort of exploding caps used in cap pistols. It is based on common theories of preconditioning and some stuff he read by Mark Twain on a cat's ability to learn.
"It's based, actually, on a combination of Pavlov and Mark Twain. If both those guys are wrong, I'm wrong."
The dapper 54-year-old promoter denied he was "anti-cat" and said that in fact his invention would allow cats and birds to live together in harmony.

El Paso Times - Dec 26, 1968





Los Angeles Times - Jan 23, 1969

Posted By: Alex - Wed Nov 13, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Animals, Inventions, Cats, 1960s

Augmented Roman

Augmented Roman was one of the periodic attempts to improve and rationalize the English alphabet. Introduced in the 1960s by Sir James Pitman, the idea was to expand the alphabet from 26 letters to 43, and to have each letter represent a single, distinct sound. Unlike the current alphabet in which letters can have different sounds depending on context.

Proponents of Augmented Roman imagined teaching children to read using this improved alphabet, and then having the kids switch over to the standard alphabet later. And that's where the plan ran aground, because most people figured that if kids have to learn the standard alphabet anyway, just teach them that from the beginning.

image source: omnivorenz



Tampa Bay Times - Sep 2, 1962



Tampa Bay Times - Sep 2, 1962

Posted By: Alex - Fri Oct 25, 2019 - Comments (7)
Category: Education, Languages, 1960s

Glass Box Baby

Sara Franklin's 15 minutes of fame came from being the first baby raised in a glass box. Or in an Air crib, as the device, invented by psychologist B.F. Skinner, was called. More info from wikipedia:

The air crib is an easily cleaned, temperature- and humidity-controlled enclosure intended to replace the standard infant crib. Skinner invented the device to help his wife cope with the day-to-day tasks of child rearing. It was designed to make early childcare simpler (by reducing laundry, diaper rash, cradle cap, etc.), while allowing the baby to be more mobile and comfortable, and less prone to cry. Reportedly it had some success in these goals.

The air crib was a controversial invention. It was popularly mischaracterized as a cruel pen, and it was often compared to Skinner's operant conditioning chamber, commonly called the "Skinner Box". This association with laboratory animal experimentation discouraged its commercial success, though several companies attempted production.

Sydney Morning Herald - July 5, 1964



Indianapolis Star - Jan 12, 1966

Posted By: Alex - Tue Oct 22, 2019 - Comments (3)
Category: Babies, 1960s

Follies of the Madmen #448



Kills germs with dictatorial efficiency!

Posted By: Paul - Wed Oct 16, 2019 - Comments (2)
Category: Business, Advertising, Dictators, Tyrants and Other Harsh Rulers, Hygiene, Stereotypes and Cliches, 1960s

Midge, Barbie & Ken



After learning "the three of them go everywhere together," the occasion of a masked ball tips it over into EYES WIDE SHUT territory.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Oct 14, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Sexuality, Toys, 1960s

Follies of the Madmen #447

One of the rare ads of the period that objectify the male's looks.



Source.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Oct 10, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Body, Business, Advertising, Fashion, 1960s, Men

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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, science-themed books such as Elephants on Acid and Psychedelic Apes.

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