Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Life this Week: April 18, 1938

Here are links to a few of my favorite articles from the April 18, 1938, issue of Life, courtesy of Google Books.

The cover features a portrait of Paulette Goddard with her dog.  I love her collection of bracelets!  The contents page tells us she is "generally supposed to be Mrs. Charlie Chaplin" and that she is admired in Palm Beach for her "pixyish charm and by her long fingernails, which extend nearly an inch beyond her fingertips."  Life also tells us that she carried a broken fingernail around in a sling (seriously?) and she's no longer in the running for the role of Scarlett O'Hara.

Don't be a bad-tempered bride--buy a Simmons Beautyrest!

Louis Fabian Bachrach believes the prettiest American girls are to be found along the Atlantic seaboard from Boston to Baltimore.  Do you agree?

If you're as cheap as a Scot, you'll love Sanka.  I would argue against the stereotype of my ancestral home being full of cheapskates, but I'm too busy turning off the climate control and saving yarn scraps and bread crusts.

There are two pages on the Austrian reaction to Anschluß (April 10, 1938).  Life reports, "Some observers expected that Austria may become the center of an underground anti-Nazi movement infecting all of Greater Germany." 

Oh my God, this is one of the worst movies I've ever seen.  Seriously.  Even Life calls it "melodramatic Hollywood hokum" in an article about Sigrid Gurie, "the flower of Flatbush."  Unless you have a perverse love for ridiculous dialogue, ahistorical content and white actors in ethnic make-up (Basil Rathbone as an Arab, anyone?), don't bother with this one.  Funny tidbit: this film shares its "Venice" set with the (actually less crappy) Goldwyn Follies.

The Santa Fe Super Chief  has "every form of hotel comfort."  Too bad first-class accommodations no longer cost $56.15 for a trip from Chicago to Los Angeles!

Life devotes eight pages of this issue to illustrate Passover traditions, show Doré engravings of the Book of Exodus and discuss the problems facing Jews in 1938.  Frankly, they could have devoted an entire issue to that topic.

There are plenty of interesting ads and articles.  Which were your favorites?


  1. Your daddy and I just finished watching Paulette Goddard in Kitty on TCM. Thought it was a little strange, the hero(?)is really a cad - but he gets the girl in the end anyway. I really enjoy this Life in the Week series!

  2. Paul's playing video games, so I recorded it. I'll have to watch it tomorrow!

  3. LOL - broken fingernail in a sling eh. I have a paper cut - I winder if I can put my finger in a sling and get some sympathy.

  4. Personally, I'd like to see an illustration of the fingernail sling.

  5. Nothing like advertising using racial stereotypes! :)

  6. Paulette was a fabulous broad who used what she had to get what she wanted -- when she died, unlike many of her celluloid sisters, she actually left a multi-million dollar estate, plus a legendary collection of jewelry. PG never became a superstar, and her fall from Hollywood A-list was swift (one minute, directed by De Mille; next stop: Babes in Baghdad) -- but she certainly was never boring.

    Another piece of Adventures of Marco Polo trivia: Lana Turner has a bit part as a Chinese handmaiden; the makeup department shaved off her eyebrows for the role, and they never grew back -- poor Lana had to draw them in for the rest of her life.

  7. TJB- You are a wealth of information! Paulette Goddard was a wonderful actress (I watched Kitty yesterday) and it sounds as though she was a fascinating woman, as well. I never even noticed Lana Turner in The Adventures of Marco Polo. I was just hoping it would be over soon!

  8. super intéressant!! je ne savais pas que l'on pouvait avoir accès à la presse des années 30 sur le net! waow! :)

  9. ps : I tagged you on my blog. sorry if you've already done it. see you anyway ! ;)

  10. Wow . . . That article on Passover and the Jews is very interesting . . . I have to read it over more closely. I'm showing it to my husband--I know he will find it as fascinating as I do.
    Thanks for drawing my attention to this.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.