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Stunning pageant photographs show the first ever Miss Americas and bathing beauties from the 1920s

Posted by on Sep. 16, 2012 at 11:58 AM
  • 7 Replies

 

Stunning pageant photographs show the first ever Miss Americas and bathing beauties from the 1920s

By Daily Mail Reporter

PUBLISHED: 10:45 EST, 9 September 2012 | UPDATED: 12:42 EST, 9 September 2012

Stunning photographs taken of beauty pageants a century ago show that nothing has changed yet everything is different.

Vintage snaps from the 1920s, 30s and 40s show smiling young women lined up in their bathing suits, standing side on with a jutted hip and one leg stuck forward - or even in the air.

And, just as today, there can only be one winner, one Miss America.

 

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by on Sep. 16, 2012 at 11:58 AM
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maciymommieof3
by Angie on Sep. 16, 2012 at 11:59 AM

 

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Past pageants: Evelyn Lewis, left, competed in the Miss America pageant as Miss Washington in 1922; right three contestants, including Miss Coney Island winners from 1924 and 1925, look like naturals



 

maciymommieof3
by Angie on Sep. 16, 2012 at 11:59 AM

 

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Miss America: Competing as Miss Philadelphia, Ruth Malcolmson, left, won the Golden Mermaid trophy in Atlantic City in 1924 to become Miss America. Alma Carroll, right, wearing an Army overseas cap, has answered the beauty draft call here, hoping to be crowned Miss America of National Defense in 1934



 

maciymommieof3
by Angie on Sep. 16, 2012 at 12:00 PM

 

Indeed African American women did not begin competing in the Miss America pageant until the 1970s; the first black winner, Vanessa Williams, was crowned in 1984.

Another difference is the location – the majority of these black and white snaps were taken in Atlantic City, the home of the annual pageant.

The contest was launched in 1921 in a bid to keep tourists sticking around following Labor Day, an idea warmly supported by the local mayor.

In 2006, after nine decades in the New Jersey entertainment mecca, the contest packed up and moved to Las Vegas.

The photos also show women, who are wearing modest swimwear compared to today's tiny bikinis, competing in beauty pageants in New York's Coney Island and in California.

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Pretty as a picture: Atlantic City's Bathing Beauties of 1922 point their toes and nervously smile for the camera

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Political pose: Beauty pageant contestants with NRA tattoos line up in Miami in the 1930s

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Bathing beauties: Women and a little girl dressed in the latest in 1920s swimwear line up for a bathing beauty contest

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Californian girls: Santa Monica beauty pageant winner Laura Hover, left, peers through the shapely legs of her fellow contenders. Seen right, beauty contestants protest in Venice, California, over Atlantic City's monopoly on the beauty pageant business

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Striking a pose: Contestants in the upcoming South Boston, Virginia beauty pageant at the National Tobacco Festival stand naked in a large hickory barrel. In 1922 Mary Catherine Campbell (as Miss Columbus) wins the Miss America title at Atlantic City, with Hudson Maxim as Neptune



 

Courtney610
by Courtney on Sep. 16, 2012 at 12:01 PM
1 mom liked this
Wow, beautiful!
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Hottmomma607
by Trica on Sep. 16, 2012 at 12:54 PM
Wow! Cool!
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Hottmomma607
by Trica on Sep. 16, 2012 at 12:59 PM
1 mom liked this
I remember being 11yo hearing about Vanessa Williams winning. Then later her photos scandal leaked&she lost her crown. But I really remember her from her songs she had than her being Miss A.! I must say she still looks good! I can't wait to check out that show she is in Park Ave. 666.
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Hottmomma607
by Trica on Sep. 16, 2012 at 1:03 PM
1 mom liked this
OT: My fav fashion era is the Roaring 20's I love the way they dressed! And the 50's too! I loved to seeing Lucille Ball on I ♥ Lucy, those 50's dresses were just beautful! And the ankle length pants with the flats adorable!!
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