The Roaring Twenties - Kent City School District
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THE ROARING TWENTIES The 1920s
The 1920s was a colorful decade in both Europe and America, sandwiched between the hardships of the two World Wars. Especially in the United States, the 1920s was also accompanied with a dizzying amount of slang, most of which was used by young people. Many phrases from 1920s slang are still used in modern English, as is the case with terms like “baby” for sweetheart, “necking” for making out, “john” for toilet, and “Joe” for coffee. Others have faded into obscurity, only to be revived in films and books which celebrate the 1920s.
1920s slang is often related to alcohol and having a good time, since Prohibition put a premium on both of these things. The slang also reflects changing morals and ideas, especially surrounding sexuality. Flappers, young women who enjoyed risque garments and late night dancing, abounded, as did daddys, wealthy older men, to support them. Many 1920s slang terms also suggest a sense of fun and mischievousness, both of which ran rampant during the 1920s.
An attractive woman in 1920s slang was a Sheba, while a man was a Sheik. The two might spend a night on the snuggle bunny, the back seat of a car, assuming neither upchucked from drinking too much hooch. A woman might also put the brakes on the proceedings by declaring “the bank's closed,” or she might be a wet blanket and want to go home early. People who stayed out late were known as owls in 1920s slang, a term which has endured to this day.
Something particularly excellent might be the bee's knees, the cat's pajamas, or the cat's meow. A woman might get dolled up in her glad rags for a late night on the town, meaning that she put some care into her appearance and wore her nicest garments. After a blind date, one or more participants might carry a torch for the other, assuming that no one got smacked in the kisser, or mouth. Being a good hoofer, a dancer, was also a valued trait.
Given the criminal atmosphere of the 1920s, it should come as no surprise that many 1920s slang terms were related to criminal activity. Someone might be on the lam from the fuzz, indicating that they were avoiding the police, or “on the level,” for law abiding and reasonable. In a hairy situation, someone might become the fall guy, taking the punishment or being framed for a crime. When a joint or club was raided, the celebrants would usually scram in an attempt to avoid being penalized.
In 1920s slang, an establishment might be ritzy, like the hotel chain, meaning that it was extremely nice. People were advised not to take any wooden nickels, a colorful way to say “don't be stupid,” and stragglers would be exhorted to “get a wiggle on” for “get moving!” And, of course, people were reminded to “mind your own beeswax” if they got too nosy.
The long-term endurance of many 1920s slang terms may be related to a general glorification of the era. It is probably also due to the fact that the 1920s marked a distinct change in attitudes, especially for young people, and it paved the way for many other things, from the spread of jazz to the women's liberation movement. Thus, the neologisms of the 1920s hold particular resonance since many of them describe new concepts.
SLANG TERMS YOU NEED TO KNOW Applesauce- an expletive same as horse feathers, as in "Ah applesauce! Bank’s Closed- no kissing or making out - i.e. "Sorry, Mac, the bank's closed." Bee’s Knees- An extraordinary person, thing, idea; the ultimate. Breezer: a convertible car. Berries- That which is attractive or pleasing; similar to bee's knees, as in "It's the berries." Cat's Meow- Something splendid or stylish; similar to bee's knees; the best or greatest, wonderful. Dead soldier - an empty beer bottle. Gams- A woman's legs.
SLANG YOU NEED TO KNOW Giggle Water-An intoxicating beverage; alcohol. It - Sex appeal Sheba - A woman with sex appeal (from the movie Queen of Sheba) or (e.g. Clara Bow) Tomato - a female Upchuck - To vomit when one has drunk too much Sheik - A man with sex appeal (from the Valentino movies) Hot Diggity Dog- an expression of happiness. Dogs- feet (my dogs are barking).
WHAT WE READ
The top selling and most read books of the decade. Following WWI (the war to end all wars), talented young authors, some expatriates in France, wrote about their feelings of disillusionment and alienation. A sense of rebellion developed and the Victorian idea of decency was considered hypocritical. Writers began to write frankly about sexuality. Three important groups during this period were: The Algonquin Round Table, also called THE ROUND TABLE, informal group of American literary men and women who met daily for lunch on weekdays at a large round table in the Algonquin Hotel in New York City during the 1920s and '30s. Many of the best-known writers, journalists, and artists in New York City were in this group. Among them were Dorothy Parker, Alexander Woollcott (author of the quote "All the things I really like are immoral, illegal, or fattening", Heywood Broun, Robert Benchley, Robert Sherwood, George S. Kaufman, Franklin P. Adams, Marc Connelly, Harold Ross, Harpo Marx , and Russell Crouse.
THE AGE OF INNOCENCE (1920):
a 1920 novel by Edith Wharton, which won the 1921 Pulitzer Prize. The novel takes place among New York City's upper class during the 1870s, before the advent of electric lights, telephones or motor vehicles; when there was a small cluster of aristocratic "old revolutionary stock" families that ruled New York's social life; when "being things" was better than "doing things" -- one's occupation or abilities were secondary to heredity and family connections, when reputation and outward appearances came at the exclusion of everything and everyone else, and when Fifth Avenue was so deserted by nightfall that it was possible to follow the comings and goings of society by watching who went to which household. First published in four parts during July to October 1920 in the Pictorial Review and then in the same year by D. Appleton and Company in New York and in London.
THE SHEIK (1920): Edith M. Hull’s romance novel about a sheik that abducts and later falls in love with an English girl. The book dealt with difficult subjects as well as controversial subjects. Much was left to the imagination of the reader. This book has attracted some controversy due to its depiction of a strong, self-sufficient woman being tamed and subdued by a man who rapes her repeatedly. This is exacerbated by the fact that she falls in love with her rapist. The plot has been compared to the Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare.
THE OUTLINE OF HISTORY (1920):
The Outline of History (1920): H.G. Wells’ nonfiction book that traces human history and attempts to show that education is the savior of society, not revolution.
MAIN STREET (1921):
Main Street (1921): Sinclair Lewis’s first major novel. Main Street satirizes life in the American Middle West, criticizing Americans’ frivolous purchasing habits and desires to conform.
BLACK OXEN (1923):
Black Oxen (1923): Gertrude Atherton’s novel about female sexuality.
Emily Post’s nonfiction manual that describes proper behavior.
WHEN WE WERE VERY YOUNG (1925):
A.A. Milne’s children’s book which contained fortyfour poems. The book begins with an introduction entitled Just Before We Begin which in part tells the reader to imagine for themselves who the narrator is, and that it might be Christopher Robin. The thirty-eighth poem in the book, Teddy Bear, that originally appeared in the Punch magazine in 1923, was the first appearance of the famous character Winnie-thePooh. In one of the illustrations of Teddy Bear, Winnie-the-Pooh is shown wearing a shirt which was later colored red when reproduced on a recording produced by Stephen Slesinger. This has become his standard appearance in the Disney adaptations.
GENTLEMAN PREFER BLONDES (1926):
Anita Loos’ comic novel about a young blonde flapper who charms men into giving her expensive gifts.
THE PLUTOCRAT (1927):
Booth Tarkington’s novel about the adventures of a wealthy razor blade “king”.
ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT (1929):
A novel by German writer Erich Maria Remarque that fictionalizes his experiences during WWI.
WHAT WE LISTENED TO—RADIO AND MUSIC Radio's emergence Radio dominated the Twenties, with roughly 3 million Americans owning radios by 1923. Most listeners still used crystal sets with earphones to receive news and bulletins, advertising and music. The appeal of the spoken word attracted audiences and advertisers, while publishers were forced to improve upon its image to retain profits. Television, capable of wireless transmission of moving pictures, was first demonstrated in 1926, combining sight and sound to rival radio.
THE FIRST RADIO BROADCAST (1921)
The boxing match between Johnny Ray and Johnny Dundee aired over KDKA in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
THE FIRST WORLD SERIES WAS BROADCAST IN 1921 The fall classic between the New York Yankees and the New York Giants was broadcast on WJZ in Newark, New Jersey. the New York Giants beat the New York Yankees five games to three. This was the last of the experimental best-five-of-nine series.
THE FIRST RADIO BROADCAST OF A FULL-LENGTH PLAY.
Broadcast 1922. WGY in Schenectady New York, The Wolf, a two and one half hour play.
1922-THE FIRST FOOTBALL GAME WAS BROADCAST.
In the first football game ever broadcast on the radio Princeton (4-0-0) traveled to the University of Chicago (3-0-0) for a rematch of Chicago's 1921 win. The game was witnessed by 32,000 fans, and listened to on New York's WEAF radio station. John Thomas ran for three touchdowns and Chicago's Maroons led 18-7 as the fourth quarter began, but a 40 yard interception return closed the gap. In the closing minutes, and Harry Crum was buried under a pile of players as he plunged toward the goal line, and when the mass was untangled, it was a touchdown. With the help of a better kicking game, Princeton won 21-18.
FIRST PRESIDENTIAL POLITICAL CONVENTION BROADCAST 1924
The conventions that led to the nominations of Republican Calvin Coolidge and Democrat John W. Davis were the first of their kind on radio.
WSM NATIONAL BARN DANCE 1924
National Barn Dance, an early American country music radio program first heard on WLS-AM in Chicago, Illinois, was a direct precursor of the Grand Ole Opry. It also set the stage for similar programs, in part because the clear-channel signal of WLS could be received throughout most of the Midwest and even beyond in the late evening and nighttime hours, making much of the United States (and Canada) a potential audience. The program was well-received and thus widely imitated. Renamed the Grand Ole Opry in 1927 The show was founded by broadcaster George D. Hay, aired from 1924 to 1968 and was once sponsored by Alka-Seltzer.
SAM ‘N’ HENRY was a radio series by Freeman Gosden and Charles Correll which aired in 1926 and 1927. Although primarily a dramatic serial with occasional comic elements, it is often considered to be the first situation comedy. Gosden and Correll reworked the premise on a more ambitious scale to create their long-run radio show Amos 'n' Andy in 1928.
"Transitone TH-1" from 1927 are the first massproduced car radios. The year and date for the first production run of a "real car radio" remains still a bit of a mystery considering what's known about the subject at this time. However, it's safe to claim that the product "car radio" came into existence latest in 1927.
THE ROSE BOWL
The 1927 Rose Bowl Game was a college football bowl game held on January 1, 1927 in Pasadena, California. The game featured the Alabama Crimson Tide, of the Southern Conference, and Stanford, of the Pacific-10 Conference. The game ended in a 7–7, and was the last Rose Bowl game to end in a tie.
POP ICONS-WHO WE KNEW
Charles Atlas: Dubbed “America’s Most Perfectly Developed Man” in a body-building contest held at Madison Square Garden in 1922.
Nicknamed “Scarface Al,” he became a wealthy and powerful bootlegger in Chicago. He was the most notorious criminal of this decade.
COCO (GABRIELLE) CHANEL
French fashion designer who provided a personal example to women around the world of “the new woman”: independent, business-savvy, and free. Her designs and fragrances continue to be fashionable. Chanel Number Five has been in production since 1921.
A powerful and eloquent defense attorney who represented John T. Scopes in the highly publicized Scopes “Monkey” Trial of 1925.
Heavyweight boxing champion who symbolized the 1920s pursuit of success by winning the first million dollar boxing prize and four more throughout the decade.
Magician well known in the 1920s for his elaborate tricks and his crusade to denounce believers in the occult. In 1926, he successfully completed his most dangerous trick when he escaped after ninety minutes from a submerged coffin. He died later that year from complications of appendicitis.
HANS VON KALTENBORN
Became the first radio news commentator in 1922 when is analysis of a coal strike was broadcast. His comments were regularly broadcast nationally on the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) in the 1930s.
Aviator Lindbergh captivated the world with his solo cross-Atlantic flight in 1927. He flew his Spirit of St. Louis monoplane 33.5 hours from New York to Paris.
MAUD WOOD PARK
First president of the League of Women Voters, which was formed in 1920 to educate new voters.
Home run hitter who thrilled crowds in his games with the New York Yankees, making baseball a tremendously profitable venture. When he hit a home run on the opening day of Yankee Stadium in 1923, the place was dubbed “The House That Ruth Built.”
DAVID C. STEPHENSON
Ku Klux Klan leader convicted of second-degree murder in the 1920s. Upon his conviction, evidence of corruption in the Klan was publicized. The group had reformed after World War I to guard against not only blacks but Jews, Catholics, socialists and communists as well. In the 1920s, the group hired a public relations firm to recruit members and by 1925 membership swelled to four million and had elected several members to political positions in Texas, Oklahoma, Indiana, Oregon and Maine.
The most well-known evangelist in the country since 1917. He found his quest for a “totally dry America” difficult as the decade wore on and Americans began to question the Eighteenth Amendment and its supporters.
The most well known “gossip” columnist and perhaps the first. His columns and radio broadcasts were read or listened to by between twenty-five and fifty million people at the height of his popularity during this decade.
WHAT WE WATCHED
POLLYANNA (1920) Pollyanna is a 1920 melodrama/comedy starring Mary Pickford, directed by Paul Powell, and based upon a Eleanor H. Porter novel. It was Pickford's first motion picture for United Artists. It became a major success and would be regarded as one of Pickford's most defining pictures. The film grossed $1.1 million (the equivalent of more than $10 million in 2008) The film was first released in 1920. It had a budget of $300,000 and grossed $1,160,962 Worldwide on its first theatrical run. It was extremely popular, becoming the role that defined Pickford's 'little girl' movies. Pickford was 27 and had to play a 12 year old (albeit convincingly).
THE MARK OF ZORRO (1920)
The Mark of Zorro is a silent motion picture released in 1920 starring Douglas Fairbanks and Noah Beery. This genre-defining swashbuckler adventure was the first movie version of The Mark of Zorro. Based on the 1919 story "The Curse of Capistrano" by Johnston McCulley, which introduced the masked hero, Zorro, the screenplay was adapted by Fairbanks (as "Elton Thomas") and Eugene Miller. The Mark of Zorro tells the story of Don Diego Vega, the outwardly foppish son of a wealthy ranchero Don Alejandro in the old Spanish California of the early 19th century. Seeing the mistreatment of the peons by rich landowners and the oppressive colonial government, Don Diego, who is not as effete as he pretends, has taken the identity of the masked Robin Hood-like rogue Señor Zorro ("Mr. Fox"), champion of the people, who appears out of nowhere to protect them from the corrupt administration of Governor Alvarado, his henchman the villainous Captain Juan Ramon and the brutish Sergeant Pedro Gonzales (Noah Beery, Wallace Beery's older half-brother, in an amazingly energetic performance). With his sword flashing and an athletic sense of humor, Zorro scars the faces of evildoers with his mark, "Z."
THE MARK OF ZORRO
DOUGLAS FAIRBANKS AS ZORRO
THE THREE MUSKETEERS (1921)
Douglas Fairbanks stars as the young Gascon d’Artagnan who travels to Paris to become one of the French king’s musketeers in this silent film. He is apprenticed by three of the king’s best musketeers and soon becomes involved in their effort to save France from the evil Cardinal Richelieu.
THE THREE MUSKETEERS
ORPHANS OF THE STORM (1921)
Lillian and Dorothy Gish star in this silent film directed by D.W. Griffith about two girls (one an orphan) raised as sisters who travel to Paris and become separated as the French Revolution erupts and overthrows the aristocracy.
ORPHANS IN THE STORM
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS (1923)
Starring Richard Dix and Rod LaRoque and directed by Cecil B. DeMille, this silent film tells the ancient story of Moses leading the Jews from Egypt and receiving the tablets and, in a second part, illustrates the benefits of the commandments in a story about two brothers fighting over the love of one woman in modern day San Francisco.
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
THE PILGRIM (1923)
A short comedic silent film starring Charlie Chaplin who plays an escaped prisoner who dresses as a preacher and becomes the minister for small town.
THE GOLD RUSH (1925)
Charlie Chaplin stars as a lone prospector who ventures into Alaska looking for gold. He gets mixed up with some burly characters and falls in love with the beautiful Georgia. He tries to win her heart with his singular charm. The Gold Rush was a huge success in the US and worldwide. It is the fifth highest grossing silent film in cinema history, taking in more than $4,250,001 at the box office in 1926. It is in fact the highest grossing silent comedy film.
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (1925)
Promoted as the “Greatest Horror Film of Modern Cinema,” this silent film stars Lon Chaney as the disfigured “phantom” who haunts a Paris Opera house and tries to advance the career of his beloved Christine.
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA
With a cast of 125,000, this silent film offered viewers a stunning depiction of the conflict between a Roman officer, Messala (played by Francis X. Bushman), and his former childhood friend, the conquered Israelite, Judah Ben-Hur (played by Ramon Novarro).
THE SON OF THE SHEIK (1926)
This movie stars Rudolph Valentino in his last movie role. Some believe it is his best. The silent film depicts the story of the younger son of a sheik falling in love with a dancing girl.
THE SON OF THE SHEIK
THE JAZZ SINGER (1927)
Starring Al Jolson, this was the first “talkie” film. Jolson plays a young man who gives up his dream of becoming a Broadway singer to replace his father as cantor at a synagogue after his father’s death.
STEAMBOAT WILLIE (1929)
Produced by Walt Disney, this was the first animated film with synchronized sound and the first film to feature the now-beloved character, Mickey Mouse.
Superstars of Decade
Arbuckle is noted as one of the most popular actors of his era, but he is best remembered for a heavily publicized criminal prosecution that ended his career. Although he was acquitted by a jury with a written apology, the trial's scandal ruined the actor, who would not appear on screen again for another 10 years.[
frequently called the greatest of his generation. He first gained fame as a stage actor, lauded for his portrayals of Hamlet and Richard III. His success continued with motion pictures in both the silent and sound eras. His distinguished features won him the nickname "The Great Profile". A member of a multi-generation theatrical dynasty, he was the brother of Lionel Barrymore and Ethel Barrymore, and is the paternal grandfather of Drew Barrymore.
CLARA BOW was an American actress and sex symbol who rose to fame in the silent film era of the 1920s. Bow was renowned for her sexual magnetism, vivaciousness and high-spirited personality, and became known around the world as "The It girl", where "It" was commonly understood to mean sex appeal. She became known as the quintessential flapper.
nicknamed "The Man of a Thousand Faces," was an American actor during the age of silent films. He was one of the most versatile and powerful actors of early cinema. He is best remembered for his characterizations of tortured, often grotesque and afflicted characters, and his groundbreaking artistry with film
better known as Charlie Chaplin, was an Academy Award-winning English comedic actor and filmmaker. Chaplin became one of the most famous actors as well as a notable filmmaker, composer and musician in the early to mid "Classical Hollywood" era of American cinema. Chaplin acted in, directed, scripted, produced and eventually scored his own films as one of the most creative and influential personalities of the silent-film era. His working life in entertainment spanned over 65 years, from the Victorian stage and the Music Hall in the United Kingdom as a child performer almost until his death at the age of 88. His high-profile public and private life encompassed both adulation and controversy. With Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and D. W. Griffith, Chaplin cofounded United Artists in 1919
JOAN CRAWFORD Starting as a dancer on Broadway Crawford was signed to a motion picture contract by Metro-GoldwynMayer Studios in 1925 and initially played small parts. She became a famous flapper by the end of the '20s. Beginning in the 1930s, Crawford's fame rivaled fellow MGM colleagues Norma Shearer and Greta Garbo. She often played hardworking young women who find romance and financial success. These "rags-to-riches" stories were well-received by Depressionera audiences and were popular with women. By the end of the decade, Crawford remained one of Hollywood's most prominent movie stars, and one of the highest paid women in the United States.
BEBE DANIELS In the 1920s, Daniels was under contract with Paramount Pictures. She became an adult star by 1922 and by 1924 was playing opposite Rudolph Valentino in Monsieur Beaucair. Following this she was cast in a number of light popular films, namely Miss Bluebeard, The Manicure Girl, and Wild Wild Susan. Paramount dropped her contract with the advent of talking pictures, because it was commonly believed that only trained actors from the stage would be successful in the talkies. Daniels was hired by Radio Pictures (later known as RKO) to star in one of their biggest productions of the year. She also starred in the 1929 talkie Rio Rita. It proved to be one of the most successful films of that year, and Bebe Daniels found herself a star and RCA Victor hired her to record several records for their catalog.
was an American actor, screenwriter, director and producer, who became noted for his swashbuckling roles in silent films such as The Black Pirate (1926). At one point, Fairbanks was also known as "The King of Hollywood“ He was married to Mary Pickford.
was a Swedish-American actress during Hollywood's silent film period and part of its Golden Age. Regarded as one of the greatest and most inscrutable movie stars ever produced by MetroGoldwyn-Mayer and the Hollywood studio system, Garbo received a 1954 Honorary Oscar "for her unforgettable screen performances" and in 1999 was ranked as the fifth greatest female star of all time by the American Film Institute.[
LILLIAN GISHwas an American stage, screen and television actress whose film acting career spanned 75 years, from 1912 to 1987. She was a prominent film star of the 1910s and 1920s, particularly associated with the films of director D.W. Griffith, including her leading role in Griffith's seminal Birth of a Nation (1915). Her sound-era film appearances were sporadic, but included a memorable role in the 1955 cult thriller Night of the Hunter. She did considerable television work from the early 1950s into the 1980s, and closed her career playing opposite Bette Davis in the 1987 film The Whales of August.
BUSTER KEATON was an Academy Award-winning American comic actor and filmmaker. Best known for his silent films, his trademark was physical comedy with a stoic, deadpan expression on his face, earning him the nickname "The Great Stone Face" (referencing the Nathaniel Hawthorne story about the "Old Man of the Mountain"). He has also been called "The Michelangelo of Silent Comedy". In 1999, the American Film Institute ranked Keaton the 21st greatest male actor of all time. Keaton's career as a performer and director is widely considered to be among the most innovative and important work in the history of cinema. He was recognized as the seventh greatest director of all time by Entertainment Weekly.
Harold Lloyd ranks alongside Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton as one of the most popular and influential film comedians of the silent film era. Lloyd made nearly 200 comedy films, both silent and "talkies," between 1914 and 1947. He is best known for his "Glasses Character", a resourceful, successseeking go-getter who was perfectly in tune with 1920s era America.
the star of many early Western movies. He made a reported 336 films between 1910 and 1935, all but nine of which were silent features. He was Hollywood’s first Western megastar and is noted as having helped define the genre for all cowboy actors who followed.
one of the most fashionable stars of the silent film era.
a Polish film actress who achieved notoriety as a femme fatale in silent films between 1910s and 1930s
MARY PICKFORD an Academy Award-winning Canadian motion picture, as well as a co-founder of the film studio United Artists and one of the original 36 founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Known as "America's Sweetheart," "Little Mary" and "The girl with the curls," she was one of the first Canadian pioneers in early Hollywood and one of film's greatest pioneers. Her influence in the development of film acting was enormous. Because her international fame was triggered by moving images, she is a watershed figure in the history of modern celebrity. And as one of silent film's most important performers and producers, her contract demands were central to shaping the Hollywood industry. In consideration of her contributions to American cinema, the American Film Institute named Pickford 24th among the greatest female stars of all
an Academy Award-nominated, Golden Globe-winning American Hollywood actress. She was prolific during the silent film era, but her career declined with the advent of "talkies". She is now best known for her performance in the film Sunset Boulevard (1950), in which — mirroring her own life — she portrayed a former silent movie star largely forgotten by audiences of the day.
one of the greatest film stars of the silent era. A major box office draw for more than a decade, her career reached a peak in the early 20s, when she ranked among the most popular idols of the American screen
an Italian actor, sex symbol, and early pop icon. Known as the "Latin Lover", he was one of the most popular stars of the 1920s, and one of the most recognized stars from the silent movie era. Some of his best known roles include the silent films The Sheik and The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. His untimely death at age 31 caused mass hysteria among his female fans, propelling him into icon status
an American silent film actress. Bara was one of the most popular screen actresses of her era, and was one of cinema's earliest sex symbols. Her femme fatale roles earned her the nickname "The Vamp" (short for vampire). The term "vamp" soon became a popular slang term for a sexually predatory woman. Bara, along with Broadway turned film actress Valeska Suratt, and the French film actress Musidora, popularized the vamp persona in the early years of silent film and was soon imitated by rival actresses such as Nita Naldi and Pola Negri.
1920 # 1 “DARDANELLA” BEN SELVIN’S ORCHESTRA
1921 "WANG WANG BLUES" BY PAUL WHITEMAN'S ORCHESTRA, FEATURING GUSSIE MUELLER
"TOOT, TOOT, TOOTSIE (GOO' BYE!)" BY AL JOLSON 1922
"SOMEBODY STOLE MY GAL" BY TED WEEMS AND HIS ORCHESTRA 1923
"RHAPSODY IN BLUE" BY PAUL WHITEMAN’S ORCHESTRA WITH GEORGE GERSHWIN 1924
"YES SIR, THAT'S MY BABY" BY ACE BRIGODE & HIS FOURTEEN VIRGINIANS 1925
1926 "WHEN MY BABY SMILES AT ME" BY TED LEWIS &
HIS JAZZ BAND
"I'M COMING, VIRGINIA" BY BIX BEIDERBECKE 1927
1928 "I WANNA BE LOVED BY YOU" BY HELEN KANE
"SINGIN' IN THE RAIN" BY CLIFF EDWARDS 1929
JAZZ WAS THE MUSIC OF THE DECADE It was the best display of black musical talent the world has ever seen. Jazz originated in New Orleans Louisiana and spread across the country. Jazz grew out of Ragtime and Dixieland music.
GREAT BLACK JAZZ ARTISTS
JELLY ROLL MORTON
JOE “KING” OLIVER
WHITE MUSICIANS WERE THE FIRST TO RECORD JAZZ MUSIC FOR A PROFIT.
BLACK ARTISTS POPULARIZED JAZZ WITH WHITE AUDIENCES BY PERFORMING IT IN THEATRES AND CABARETS.
The “blues” is a distinctive and original American form of music. It is and African-American creation and one of the greatest contributions to our pop culture history. The blues tends to be sad, not always, often music was a way to deal with both hard times and good times. Without the blues there would be no rock-n-roll.
GREAT BLUES ARTISTS OF THE 20S
Her recording of Crazy Blues is thought to be the first jazz recording.
THE GRAND OLE OPRY The longest running radio show in broadcast history. It represents the pinnacle of success for a country music artist. In 1922 George D. Hay began a show called WSM Barn Dance. The Opry made country and western music into a national phenomenon.
THE GRAND OLE OPRY (CONT) Jimmie Rogers the “Blue Yodeler” and the “Singing Brakeman” is sometimes called the father of country music. In his short nine year career he became one of the most beloved performers in America.
JIMMIE ROGERS (CONT) Often called the “Father of Country Music. His Big Hits: The Mule Skinner’s Blues In the Jailhouse Now The TB Blues Died at the age of 36
PRINT CULTURE Communication was forever changed in America in the 1920s. With the beginning of radio broadcasts, printed newspapers and magazines were not the only source of information of happenings in the world. Even though about 50 million people listened to the radio by the middle of the decade, newspapers and magazines remained the dominant source of information during the 20s.
1920S PRINT CULTURE Better Homes and Gardens is one of the most widely circulated magazines in the United States. Better Homes and Gardens focuses on interests regarding homes, cooking, gardening, crafts, healthy living, decorating, and entertaining. The magazine is published 12 times per year by the Meredith Corporation. It was founded in 1922 by Edwin Meredith, who had previously been the United States Secretary of Agriculture under Woodrow Wilson
THE BOOK OF THE MONTH CLUB
founded 1926 is a United States mail-order business, customers of which are offered a new book each month.
BUCK ROGERS 1929
Began by Walter Winchell in 1924
THE HARDY BOYS
The Hardy Boys is a series of juvenile criminal detection books, chronicling the fictional adventures of teenage brothers Frank and Joe Hardy. The original Hardy Boys series was produced by Stratemeyer Syndicate, published by Grosset & Dunlap, and written by many different authors between 1927 and 1979. Leslie McFarlane was the first author to write under the pen name Franklin W. Dixon, which he did for over 20 volumes.
LITTLE BLUE BOOKS
are a series of small staple-bound books published by the Haldeman-Julius Publishing Company of Girard, Kansas (1919-1978). They were extremely popular, and achieved a total of more than 300 million booklets sold over the series' lifetime. The series was aimed at –Mr. Average Man, and so the books were very reasonably priced from the outset, first costing $0.25, and later, when production was at its peak, only $0.05 per book. Both re-printed classics and original works were included, and were referred to as a –University in Print by HaldemanJulius. The series' creator, Emanuel HaldemanJulius, directed their production for 32 years, during which time 500 million Little Blue Books, representing more than two thousand different titles, were printed in his factory for distribution across the country. They were at the height of their popularity under his direction in the 1920s and 30s.
LITTLE ORPHAN ANNIE
In 1924, Harold Gray created Little Orphan Annie for the Chicago Tribune. Gray's original concept starred a boy named, Otto. (That's right, Little Orphan Otto!) Thankfully, there were many strips featuring boys and none about a girl, so Gray changed the protagonist's gender and name. Comic strips in the 20's were very different from today's strips. Dailies were printed in a much larger format and often only one Sunday strip appeared on a newspaper page. Adventure strips ran stories for many months and sometimes for more than a year!
Reader's Digest is a monthly general-interest family magazine co-founded in 1922 by Lila Bell Wallace and DeWitt Wallace. Although its circulation has declined in recent years, the Audit Bureau of Circulation says Reader's Digest is still the best-selling consumer magazine in the USA with a circulation of over 10 million copies in the United States, and a readership of 38 million as measured by Mediamark Research (MRI).
RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT--1923
Time magazine was created in 1923 by Briton Hadden and Henry Luce, making it the first weekly news magazine in the United States. The two had previously worked together as chairman and managing editor of the Yale Daily News and considered calling the magazine Facts. Hadden was a rather carefree figure, who liked to tease Luce and saw Time as something important but also fun. That accounts for its tone, which many people still criticize as too light for serious news and more suited to its heavy coverage of celebrities (including politicians), the entertainment industry, and pop culture. It set out to tell the news through people, and for many decades the magazine's cover was of a single person. The first issue of Time was published on March 3, 1923, featuring on its cover Joseph G. Cannon, the retired Speaker of the United States House of Representatives; a facsimile reprint of Issue No. 1, including all of the articles and advertisements contained in the original, was included with copies of the February 28, 1938 issue as a commemoration of the magazine's 15th anniversary
Weird Tales is an American fantasy and horror fiction pulp magazine first published in March 1923. The magazine was set up in Chicago by J.C. Henneberger, an ex-journalist with a taste for the macabre. Edwin Baird was the first editor of the monthly, assisted by Farnsworth Wright.
WINNIE THE POOH--1924
Winnie-the-Pooh, commonly shortened to Pooh Bear and once referred to as Edward Bear, is a fictional bear created by A. A. Milne. The character first appeared in book form in Winnie-the-Pooh (1926) and The House at Pooh Corner (1928). Milne also included several poems about Winnie-the-Pooh in the children’s poetry books When We Were Very Young and Now We Are Six. All four volumes were illustrated by E. H. Shepard.
SPORTS AND LEGENDS Baseball 1. Babe Ruth
2. Tye Cobb
3. Lou Gehrig
Red Grange Knute Rockne
MORE SPORTS Tennis Helen Wills
GAMES, TOYS AND PASTIMES Crossword Puzzles-1924 The Harlem Globetrotters--1927 Lincoln Logs--1924 Miniature Golf-1928 The Yo-Yo--1928
Flappers-became the ideal for young women of the decade
Cut off their long hair and sported a new cheek length cut called the bob. They wore simple straight knee length dresses. Wore bright red lipstick.
These Women were youthful, sheik and modern. They partied, drank, smoked and danced to “wild jazz” music. F. Scott Fitzgerald described flappers as “the generation that corrupted its elders and eventually overreached itself through a lack of good taste.” Wore distinctive fashions.
They rejected the stable, careful life of wife and mother. They shed their bra, corset and restrictive undergarments for a freer feeling. They did not want to be the equal of man, they wanted to attract him. They were criticized by many women who saw them as cheap and immoral. They had the gall to kiss in public.
Raccoon Coats: These were worn on college campuses by men. They would sport these coats and strum their ukulele. These coats were full length and reached the ground.
Purchasing on time or credit.
Advertising-modern advertising began in the 1920s, due to mass production people could afford items such as cars, radios and refrigerators.
Band-aids-1924-the first were three inches wide and eighteen inches long.
Betty Crocker-1921-General Mills created the image as a way to personalize its products and services. “Betty” was considered a friendly name and “Crocker” was a General Mills executive.
FELIX THE CAT
Felix the Cat is a cartoon character created in the silent film era. His black body, white eyes, and giant grin, coupled with the surrealism of the situations in which his cartoons place him, combined to make Felix one of the most recognizable cartoon characters next to Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck or Woody Woodpecker. Felix was the first character from animation to attain a level of popularity sufficient to draw movie audiences.
APPLIANCES The electric vacuum The electric Iron
MACY’S THANKSGIVING DAY PARADE
In 1924, the inaugural parade (originally known as the Macy's Christmas Parade and later the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Christmas Parade) was staged by the store. Employees and professional entertainers marched from 145th Street in Harlem to Macy's flagship store on 34th Street dressed in vibrant costumes. There were floats, professional bands and live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo. At the end of that first parade, as has been the case with every parade since, Santa Claus was welcomed into Herald Square. At this first parade, however, the Jolly Old Elf was enthroned on the Macy's balcony at the 34th Street store entrance, where he was then "crowned" "King of the Kiddies." With an audience of over a quarter of a million people the parade was such a success that Macy's declared it would become an annual event.
The company was first established in 1920 in Seattle by Pacific Northwest outdoorsman, Eddie Bauer (1899 – 1986). In 1940 Bauer patented the first quilted down jacket. He went on to patent numerous other designs and was the first independent company that the United States Army hired and allowed to use a logo on the Army-issued uniform.
The Kimberly-Clark Corporation created the first Western facial tissue in 1924 (it had been in use for centuries before in Japan; see History of facial tissue for details) and originally marketed them as a way to remove cold cream or makeup remover. It was a disposable substitute for face towels. In 1925, the first Kleenex tissue ad was used in magazines showing "the new secret of keeping a pretty skin as used by famous movie stars..." A few years after the introduction of Kleenex, the company's head researcher tried to persuade the head of advertising to try to market the tissue for colds and hay fever. The admin declined the idea but then committed a small amount of ad space to mention of using Kleenex tissue as a handkerchief.
In 1929, cousins Edward M. Knabusch and Edwin J. Shoemaker partnered and invested in the furniture business in the small town of Monroe, Michigan. Together, the duo set out to design a chair for "nature’s way of relaxing." Using orange crates to mock-up and refine their idea, they invented a woodslat porch chair with a reclining mechanism. Knabusch and Shoemaker then upholstered their innovation and marketed it as a year-round chair. The chair was a success, but it needed a name. Combining promotion with necessity, the partners held a contest. Entries included such names as Sit-NSnooze, Slack-Back and Comfort Carrier, but one in particular — La-Z-Boy — was the winner.[
ODDS AND ENDS:
The Charleston-The Dance Craze of the decade other dances were the Black Bottom, and the Shimmy
The Chrysler Building-1928-art deco
ODDS AND ENDS
Miss America Pageant-1921 Seven Contestants
The Prom-1st held in the 1920s
The Red Scare
Standardized Testing-1926 SAT Test
First Fast food restaurant-1921-WHITE CASTLE
FAMILIES The percentage of married women working increased during the decade. Women were no longer seen as completely dependent on their husbands for survival. Many needed two incomes to survive. Family demographics were changing 1. Families were smaller 2. Instead of a hierarchy-father as head, with mother and children subservient the family became a means of emotional satisfaction and nurture. 3. More attention was given to each child.
THE YOUNGER GENERATION A new separate youth culture began in the 1920s. They developed their own way of 1. speaking 2. dressing 3. behaving They broke with the traditions of the older generation. The adults referred to them as flaming youth.
FADS Mah-jongg, flagpole sitting, yo-yo's, goldfish swallowing, pogo sticks, roller-skating Dance marathons
is a game for four players that originated in China. Mahjong involves skill, strategy, and calculation, as well as a certain degree of luck (depending on the variation played, luck can be anything from a minor to a dominant factor in winning). In Asia, mahjong is also popularly played as a gambling game. In the game, each player is dealt either thirteen or sixteen tiles in a hand, depending on the variation being played. On their turn, players draw a tile and discard one, with the goal of making four or five melds (also depending on the variation) and one pair, or "head". Winning comes "on the draw" by drawing a new or discarded tile that completes the hand. Thus, a winning hand actually contains fourteen (or seventeen) tiles.
Flagpole-sitting was a fad from 1924 to 1929. The fad began when a friend dared stunt actor Alvin "Shipwreck" Kelly to sit on a flagpole. Shipwreck's initial 1924 sit lasted 13 hours and 13 minutes. It soon became a fad with other contestants setting records of 12, 17 and 21 days. In 1929, Shipwreck decided to reclaim the title. He sat on a flagpole for 49 days in Atlantic City, New Jersey, setting the enduring record. The following year, 1930, his record was broken by Bill Penfield in Strawberry Point, Iowa who sat on a flag pole for 51 days and 20 hours, until a thunderstorm brought him down.