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The Invention of Rayon (Literary Digest, 1937)

This magazine article reported on the Miracle Fabric of the 1930s: rayon - and rayon cannot be deleted from any study dealing with Thirties fashion any more than the word "polyester" can be separated from a discussion of 1970s fashion. The article presents a history of the fabric but makes it quite clear that the fabric was immediately embraced by all the fashion houses at that time.

Read about the 1930s revival of velvet.

Click here to read about feminine conversations overheard in the best New York bathrooms of 1937.

Harry Hopkins - FDR's Right Hand Man (United States News, 1944)

This article makes it quite clear that Harry Hopkins (1890 1946) wore many hats in the administration of FDR. During the first five years of the New Deal he had the unique title "Special Assistant to the President", he not only wrote speeches for FDR - Hopkins also oversaw the goings-on at the Civil Works Administration (CWA), the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA), and the Works Progress Administration (WPA). Between the years 1938 through 1940, he served as Secretary of Commerce and when the war came he supervised the Lend-Lease program, the Chairman of the Munitions Assignment Board and traveled frequently as the President's representative to Moscow and London.

When the U.S.S.R. collapsed, it was discovered that one of his additional duties was being a Soviet agent.

Click here to read about another member of the "New Deal Brain-Trust"...

Read an anti-Gandhi article from 1921...

A Southern View of Integration (Pageant Magazine, 1959)

In this 1959 article Alabama wordsmith Wyatt Blasingame did his level-headed best to explain the sluggish reasoning that made up the opinions of his friends and neighbors as to why racial integration of the nation's schools was a poor idea. He observed that even the proudest Southerner could freely recognize that African-Americans were ill-served by the existing school system and that they were due for some sort of an upgrade - they simply wished it wouldn't happen quite so quickly. The journalist spent a good deal of column space explaining that there existed among the Whites of Dixie a deep and abiding paranoia over interracial marriage.

Their line of thinking seems terribly alien to us, but, be assured, Southern white reasoning has come a long way since 1923...

Scientific Proof That Women Should Not Be Allowed to Vote (Current Opinion, 1912)

This article was written by the well respected British bacteriologist and immunologist Sir Almroth Wright (1861 - 1947) concerning his belief that women should be denied the vote. Relying upon his "scientific training", Wright held that women, as a result of their flawed nature, simply lacked a sense of reasoning.

A War Like No Other (Hearst's Sunday American, 1917)

An article by the admired British war correspondent Ellis Ashmead-Bartlett (1881 - 1931) concerning those aspects of the 1914 war that combined to make the entire catastrophe something unique in human history:

"Everything has changed; uniforms, weapons, methods, tactics. Cavalry had been rendered obsolete by trenches, machine guns and modern artillery; untrained soldiers proved useless, special battalions were needed on both sides to fight this particular kind of war that, in no way, resembled the battles your father or grand-fathers had once fought."
A good read.

Click here to read about the fashion legacy of W.W. I...

To read about one of the fashion legacies of W.W. II, click here...

The Amish (Coronet Magazine, 1947)

Here is a wonderful photo-essay that depicts the lives of one of the most pious communities in the United States: the Mennonites of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania:

"The Biblical statement that God wished to 'purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works' [Titus 2:14] is followed literally by the Amish. They do everything possible to ensure their goodness and to make themselves different from ordinary men."

D.W. Griffith: His Minor Masterworks (Rob Wagner's Script, 1946)

In 1946 the Museum of Modern Art Film Department decided to exhibit only the most famous films of D.W. Griffith for the retrospective that was being launched to celebrate the famed director. This enormous omission inspired film critic Herb Sterne (1906 - 1995) to think again about the large body of work that the director created and, putting pen to paper, he wrote:

"Because of the museum's lack of judgment, the Griffith collection it has chosen to circulate is woefully incomplete, thereby giving contemporary students of the motion picture a distorted and erroneous impression of the scope of the man's achievements."

To read a 1924 article regarding Hollywood film executive Irving Thalberg, click here.

ALL QUIET on the WESTERN FRONT (The Bookman, 1929)

All Quiet On The Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque topped the U.S. bestseller list for all of 1929 and it was due in no small part to enthusiastic book reviews like the one we've posted here that must have numbered in the thousands throughout all of North America:

"Here is a book about the war of such extraordinary purity and force that, reading it, one seems actually never to have read of the wear before. Numberless books have been written that present the stark, physical horrors of the war in quite as full detail as "All Quiet on the Western Front, but their effects have been nullified by one's perception of the intent to shock. Many others have given us a more complete, more literary rendition of war as it strikes full upon the nerves of sensitive and intelligent men. Nothing could be less academic than Herr Remarque's book; but nothing could be more vivid."

Is your name Anderson?

From Amazon: All Quiet on the Western Front

''Why I Live In Los Angeles'' (Pageant Magazine, 1950)

An article written at a time when L.A. was a very different city - with a population of merely ten million, the city's detractors often called it "Iowa by the sea"; today they compare it to the Balkans:

"The point is that in [1950] Los Angeles the individual leads his own life and plays his own games rather than lose himself vicariously in the capers of professionals."

Click here to read about the San Fernando Valley.

The State of Women's Suffrage in 1907 (Harper's Weekly, 1907)

This 1907 article refers to a report made by journalist and suffragist Ida Husted Harper (1851 - 1931), concerning the status of the suffrage movement as it could be found throughout the Western world. A number of interesting issues and seldom remembered concerns are sited throughout this article on the matter of the bullying and boorish ways of those wishing to hamper the advancement of women's suffrage.

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