The Sexual Revolution began slowly building with the release of the Kinsey Report in 1948 (read about that here) and from that point on the whole ball of thread began to unravel. More and more mainstream magazines, that previously would never have done so, began publishing articles about sexual concerns: adultery, frigidity and homosexuality. Hollywood went right along for the ride; TV was slow to follow, but following nonetheless. By the time 1967 came around the social war on the old taboos was in full flower. This article concerns the new standards that came into place all across America in 1968. When this article went to press, the two most infamous assassinations of 1968 had not yet taken place - after that, the flood gates would open - but change was in the air.
More about the lowering of moral standards in American popular culture can be read here...
Here is one of the few histories that explain the Star-Spangled Banner that seldom mentions its author. This short column will tell you about Sam Smith, the Militia general who kept the flag at Fort McHenry waving throughout that "perilous fight".
When this article first appeared, the Boy Scouts of America, as an institution, was barely thirty-five years old:
"The truth is that never in the history of mankind has a simple idea - an idea, incidentally, born in South Africa - so seized the imagination of boys the world over as has Scouting."
Both Boy Scots and Girl Scouts were active in the Japanese-American internment camps during W.W. II. Click here to read about that subject...
Attached is a 1946 article by Mort Weisinger (1915 - 1978), who is remembered primarily as the editor for DC Comics' Superman throughout much of the Fifties and Sixties. His four page history of Superman, attached herein, lays out not simply the origins of the character but all his great successes when deployed on behalf of the enemies of bad grammar, tooth decay, and slot machines. The author lucidly explained his own amazement at the fact that during those years spanning 1936 through 1946, Superman not only fought tooth and nail for truth, justice and the American way, but had been successfully harnessed by numerous ad men to advocate for the study of geography, civics, literacy, vocabulary and the importance of iron salvage in wartime.
At the time Weisinger penned this article, SUPERMAN was purchased annually by as many as 30,000,000 buyers.
Click here to read about the roll comic books played during the Second World War.
Do you fail to recall the words to our national anthem time and again? You're not alone - a quick glance at Google's records indicate that in the silence of their rooms, thousands of your fellow Americans suffer from the same malady (and smirk at others who make their memory loss public). To say that the Americans of today are not as patriotic as they used to be is an understatement to be sure - but some of you will no doubt be relieved to know that the Americans of yore, vintage 1941, didn't know the lyrics to The Star Spangled Banner any better than we do - as you can tell by the attached verses which were penned over seventy years ago about his fellow Americans and their inability to keep the words of Francis Scott Key in their heads.
"WHO, WHAT, AND WHY is the average American [man]? What does he eat? What does he wear? What does he worry about? These questions and more like them have taken us on a long journey through the realm of statistics. Out of the discoveries of the Department of Commerce, the Census Bureau and Dr. Gallup's polls, we've succeeded in piecing together an uncommon portrait of the common man."