Chez Paree Adorables - Margaret Scott and Shirley Hammerle: vintage 8x12 news service photo dated 6 July 1945
The caption on the photo is: Margaret Scott helps clean face of Shirley Hammerle, both Chez Paree Adorables, with tissue in view [I assume they meant in lieu] of the soap shortage. After I read this, I thought to myself ‘Soap Shortage?!?! What in the world are they referring to?” So I looked it up.
Apparently for numerous reasons, there was a severe post WWII soap shortage in the US and Europe. As many people know many substances, including gasoline, rubber and even milk, were rationed during WWII. Some of the items were needed to support troops overseas, and other were needed in the production of wartime materials (i.e. planes, tanks, uniforms etc). At the time of WWII most commercial soaps were made with a high percentage of palm oil, which was extremely scarce at the end of the war. The Philippines was a major exported of Palm oil, but when the Japanese invaded the Philippines, they destroyed all the pressing plants that produced the palm oil. So early on, there was already a decrease in the amount of palm oil available. To make matter worse, palm oil, and the soap made from it, were both utilized by the steel industry to cool and clean sheets of steel used to build planes, tanks and automobiles. Hence, by the end of the war, the raw products to make all commercial soap products were in very low supply.
Gypsy Rose Lee: vintage 7x9 news service photo dated 27 January 1945.
Gypsy was modeling for a March of Dimes Fashion Show, when she took a moment to dig deep in her stocking for an extra donation of her own. Since polio is nearly eradicated today, we do not stop to think of the fear that polio caused at one point. The March of Dimes was founded in 1938 to combat polio by Franklin D. Roosevelt, who himself suffered from the disease. After the vaccination was developed, the March of Dimes continued on to support pre-natal care and early infant health.
Dixie Evans - The Marilyn Monroe of Burlesque: as scanned from the cover of the 4 May 1957 tourist magazine This Week in Miami. At the time of publication, Dixie was appearing at the Place Pigalle club. In the article the magazine staff writers claim to be the first to notice Dixie’s resemblance to Marilyn Monroe, but according to Dixie that honor goes to Harold Minsky.
Tura Satana - Miss Japan Beautiful: as scanned from Vol 1 No 1 (1959) issue of Sizzle magazine published by Spice Publishing
Tura was born Tura Luna Pascual Yamaguchi in Hokkaido, Japan 10 July 1938. Tura’s heritage was quite diverse; her father was of Japanese, and possibly Filipino, descent and her mother was American Indian and Scots-Irish. The family was residing in the United States during WWII, and due to her father’s Japanese heritage, they were forced to reside in an internment camp in Lone, Pine, California. After the end of the war, and release from the camp, the family would settle in Chicago, Illinois. At the age of 13 she ran away from home with intentions of becoming a blues singer. When that did not pan out, Tura began modeling and eventually burlesque dancing. Later she would pair up with Russ Meyer to make the cult classic film, Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!
Lonnie Young and Lindo (snake): vintage 8x10 photo
Lonnie and Lindo are shown relaxing in their dressing room before they hit the stage. Unlike many other snake dancers, Lonnie actually bred and raised her own snakes. She also starred in the 1954 burlesque themes film Sideshow Burlesque. Dancers Nanette, Rusty Lane and Lorna Rhodes were some of Lonnie’s co-stars.
Riela Ressy - Puerto Rican Bombshell : vintage 8x10 photo dated 29 October 1949
Riela was both a popular Puerto Rican- born singer and dancer at the Cuban Village nightclub in Chicago in the 1940s. She would go on to develop a very successful career and perform with such names as Sammy Davis Jr., Bob Fosse and Tito Puente. Riela’s career would last well into the 1960s, when she had to quit performing because of illness. She died of caner in 1977 in Riverhead, NY.
Sally Rand: vintage 8x10 photo
I believe this was a promotional photo for a movie, but I do not know which of her films it was from. If anyone recognizes it…let me know, please!!