Sadie Hawkins Glory

1943 Recall

I have enough 1940s yearbooks to confirm that Sadie Hawkins dances, based on the then-popular L’il Abner strip, were a HUGE DEAL. Nowadays, not so much. In fact, my son’s high school had one scheduled earlier this month, and it was cancelled due to low ticket sales. Eight tickets, to be exact. And keep in mind, all the other dances have been packed.

What does that say about today’s youth? Aren’t women enlightened enough to ask boys to the dance? That’s the whole point of it. Or is it an outdated concept altogether, since boys now ask boys and girls ask girls? Every high school around here has its share of transgender kids who were named Katie in 8th grade and now go by Collin. Or perhaps teens just don’t like donning hillbilly garb–although I think they nixed that part long ago. Come to think of it, I haven’t seen anyone in overalls in a few decades.

In any event, the times sure have changed.

Dear Bets (The Belle Of The Ball)

Yes, I realize we rarely read cursive anymore, and truth be told, it IS a bit of a chore to read an entire paragraph. But these words to 1941 freshman coed Betty F. make for interesting reading. First, a note from her ex to his “cute little fillie.”

Here is Betty.

Her nickname was “Tank.”

This was from her boyfriend, Dan, pouring his heart out to her, and admitting that he played his best at basketball just for her.

There’s too much to share the whole thing, but the sign-off was the best.

And this was from a boy she evidently friendzoned. However, if she were to change her mind about him, he’d return so fast, it would make her head swim.

I think we can agree that this yearbook lived up to its name.

Baked Alaska To Celebrate

I have so many questions about this image. Some simple assumptions would be that this couple is celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. And by the lettering to the right of the cake, I’ll assume the wife is named Cora. But why is she wearing a dress and pearls, when he is wearing a robe and boutonnière? Is that a cake or just a heap of whipped cream? Is it melting? And what is that brick before the cake? Surely it’s not napkins.

Ample Ardor

I just purchased a 1943 Texas A&I College yearbook. Though the country was at war, the students still found time to make merry.

In fact, there seemed to be a smooching epidemic!

But as far as the FFA Barn Dance, I won’t even hazard a guess as to what was going on here.

Forbidden Fraternization

LIFE 3/19/45

During WWII, American soldiers were forbidden from fraternizing with German girls, no matter how comely or eager. Corporal Harold Goodden could hardly resist this mannequin, replete with German officer’s cap and lustrous locks. Surely she was not harboring Nazi tendencies.

But rulebooks be damned. By 1949 (four years later) over 20,000 German war brides had emigrated to the United States to join their charming US serviceman (and to get the H out of Europe).

Italy was also the enemy, but no matter to stationed soldiers. No less than 412 brides were all aboard the liner Algonquin in this shot. Clearly there was more than “fraternization” going on.

Women from many nations  soon found the US to be home. An estimated 100, 000 UK women, 1,500 hundred New Zealand women, and 15,000 Australian women married American soldiers and moved to the US as well.

Ireland was neutral during WWII, and evidently Irish lasses were not immune to the charms of American soldiers. Exactly one year after the above picture was printed, these Irish war brides set sail for a new life in New York, where their babies would be introduced to their American fathers.

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