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|How Many Americans Had Cars in the 1920s? (Current Opinion, 1922)|
The post-World War I American economy was humming along quite nicely when an inquisitive journalist took notice as to how many more cars there were on the streets (all told, there were 7.5 million). Perhaps there were no written studies documenting what we now call 'the order of durable goods' - that dependable yardstick we use to measure American opulence, and so this investigative journalist came up with a different way of figuring out just how many cars Americans could purchase -and we're mighty glad he did!
Robert Capa: Slightly Out of Focus ('47 Magazine)
This article was written by John Hersey (1914 – 1993); it was written as a review of Slightly Out of Focus, the memoir by the most famous of World War II combat photographers, Robert Capa (né Andre Friedmann: 1913 – 1954). A fun and informative read, you will learn how the man came to be a photographer, how he acquired his nom de guerre, his work during the Spanish Civil War and the credibility that quickly followed.
Click here to read what General James Gavin remembered about photographer Robert Capa.
Ode to Feminine Knees (Flapper Magazine, 1922)
When the skirt hems began to rise in the Twenties, it was widely understood that the vision of a woman's leg was a rare treat for both man and boy; a spectacle that had not been enjoyed since the days of Adam (married men excluded). The flappers certainly knew this, and they generally believed that suffering the dizzying enthusiasm of the male of the species was a small price to pay in order to secure some element of liberty. The flappers liked their hem-lengths just where they were and, thank you very much, they were not about to drop them. Attached are some verses by an anonymous flapper who expressed her reaction regarding all that undeserved male attention her knees were generating.
The Lady was a Spy (Coronet Magazine, 1954)
During World War II many women played roles as daring and courageous as were required of any man. This is the true story of one such woman, who gambled her life to help the Allies win the final victory in Europe.
"...I began my mission in wartime France as a British secret agent. Colonel Maurice Buckmaster had told me what my assignment was:"
"You will parachute into France with a wireless operator and a demolition specialist. The drop will be 40 miles from Le Mans, where Rommel's army is concentrated..."
Click here to read about the women who spied for the Nazis during the Second World War.
When the Word Became Flesh (Jesus People Magazine, 1973)
The Christian concept of death is contained in this article by the ancient Greek author Athanasius (296 - 373).
"All those who believe in Christ tread death underfoot as nothing and prefer to die rather than to deny their faith in Christ, knowing full well that when they die, they do not perish, but live indeed, and become incorruptible through the the resurrection. Death has become like a tyrant who has become completely conquered by the legitimate monarch and bound hand and foot so that the passers-by jeer at him."
Women Behind the Guns (Assorted Magazines, 1942)
When it became clear to the employers on the American home front that there was going to be a shortage of men, their attention turned to a portion of the labor pool who had seldom been allowed to prove their mettle: they were called women. This article recalls those heady days at the U.S. Army's Aberdeen Proving Ground when local women were trained to fire enormous artillery pieces in order that the Army weapons specialists understand the gun's capabilities. This column primarily concerns the delight on all the men's faces when it was discovered that women were able to perform their tasks just as well as the men.
Who Was Mussolini? (Pathfinder Magazine, 1937)
A semi-flattering profile of Benito Mussolini that explains his difficult childhood and the periodic beatings he suffered at the hands of his Marxist father. No references are made to his favorite pastimes - beating up editors and closing newspapers:
"Significantly, his god is Nietzsche, the German philosopher who wrote: 'Might makes right.'"
You can read about his violent death here...
Fascist Rome fell to the Allies in June of 1944, click here to read about it...
The U.S. Army's Cannabis Study (Newesweek Magazine, 1945)
Posted herein is a report on the seven-month study on the effects marijuana has on military personnel that was conducted in 1944:
"A great many of [the participants] attempted to form a compensatory image of themselves as superior people. 'I could be a general like MacArthur. He looks smooth - like he's high all the time.'"
Home Front Teen Slang (Yank Magazine, 1945)
A 1945 Yank Magazine article concerning American teen culture on the W.W. II home front in which the journalist/anthropologist paid particular attention to the teen-age slang of the day.
"Some of today's teenagers ---pleasantly not many --- talk the strange new language of "sling swing." In this bright lexicon of the good citizens of tomorrow, a girl with sex appeal is an "able Grable" or a "ready Hedy." A pretty girl is "whistle bait." A boy whose mug and muscles appeal to the girls is a "mellow man," a "hunk of heart break" or a "glad lad."
To read about one of the fashion legacies of W.W. II, click here...
Click here to learn how the Beatniks spoke.
Click here if you would like to read a glossary of WAC slang terms.
•Suggested Reading• Flappers 2 Rappers: American Youth Slang
Lillian Gish Recalls Making The Birth of a Nation (Stage Magazine, 1937)
Twenty-two years after wrap was called on the set of The Birth of a Nation, leading lady Lillian Gish (1893 - 1993), put pen to paper and wrote this reminiscence about her days on the set with D.W. Griffith.
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