Tag Archives: shirtwaist

Hatless in a Hat Shop, 1942

The photos taken by the Farm Security Administration and Office of War Information during the Great Depression and Second World War offer many insights into how ordinary Americans survived hard times. One small slice of history was recorded by photographer … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

A Southern California Thanksgiving, 1906

Why is this family eating outside on Thanksgiving, you might ask.  Late November can be hot in Southern California, as the Santa Ana winds sweep in from the desert.  As I write on this Thanksgiving over 100 years later, the … Continue reading

Posted in 1900s | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Burning the Mortgage, 1915

Photographs often document big moments in life—the wedding, the baby, the new house.  A tradition in Black churches is to mark the end of mortgage payments, the moment when property finally belongs to the residents, with a mortgage burning ceremony.  … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

What to Wear to a Cold War Summit, 1959

During the late 1950s, when Nikita Khrushchev came to power in the Soviet Union, there was a brief thaw in the Cold War between that country and the United States.  One sign of the shift was a big exhibit of … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

A Stylish Stout Woman at the Beach, 1953

In the 1920s, makers of plus size clothing, what was then called “stoutwear,” invented different names and sizes for different kinds of larger bodies.  A big breasted figure with a relatively small waist was named a “stylish stout.”  It was … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Maree’s Fashion Cycle

Many sociologists who study fashion try to determine when and for what reason people buy clothes. For a long time, the assumption was that older people tended to slow down consumption as they aged. Why? Often they have a smaller … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s, 1960s, 1970s | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Four Women, Four Styles

This photo is from a large collection collected by the Hur and Hahn families. It features Frances Hur, who I believe is second from right, and a group of friends. Unfortunately, the photos are not as well documented as one … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Gramie and Grampi Cut the Cake, 1960

“Gramie and Grampi with the cake Annie made for you,” reads the message on the back of this photo.  At first I thought this might be an anniversary celebration cake for the older couple, but the caption tells a different … Continue reading

Posted in 1960s | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Portrait of a Woman with Butterfly

In honor of Black History Month, I’ve been searching for collections of photographs of African Americans that might include older women.  One rich source I discovered is the private collection of Mike Cochran, given to the Portal of Texas History.  … Continue reading

Posted in 1930s, 1940s, 1950s | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Big Birthday, Big Cake–1961

When this photo appeared in the Valley Times in 1961, the accompanying text read, “Five generations of the Prince family were on hand to help celebrate the 90th birthday of Mrs. Emma E. Prince, a woman who honeymooned to the … Continue reading

Posted in 1960s | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments