Happy 81st Birthday to us!
The first issue of Newsweek was published in 1933 and covered a wide-range of topics that… pretty much reflect the issues we’re facing today, from dog sledding in Central Park on a balmy day that reminded the author of ‘Alaska in spring time,’ to a president who may be awarded ‘extraordinary powers’ in wartime.
The magazine was founded by editor Samuel T. Williamson, and run from a Dayton, Ohio headquarters.
It cost $4/year to subscribe.
Shirley Temple Black, who died Monday at the age of 85, was just a little bit older than Newsweek. Both were children of the Great Depression: Temple was born in 1928, and Newsweek was founded five years later in 1933.
While the magazine was in its infancy, Temple was at her most popular as a child star, and we reported on her with a lighthearted earnestness.
Newsweek chronicled the pint-sized star’s early birthdays, noting on what was reported to be her 8th in 1937 that she was not only the biggest attraction at the box office, but that her aspiration was to “own a pie factory when she grows up.”
It came out later that Temple’s mother lied about the girl’s age, so, like the rest of the press at the time, Newsweek’s reports missed her correct age by a year. In 1938, Newsweek reported that she was raking in an estimated $15,000 each week. But there seemed to be no cause for concern that she was going to sink all that money into a bid to actually buy herself that pie factory—“a large share” of the child’s funds were “being held in trust in the California bank of which her father is manager.”
When the box-office sensation was 10 (actually 11) in 1939, Newsweek dutifully informed its readers that she weighed in at 75 pounds and had grown two inches in the last year, and now stood a good 4.5 feet tall. But that light-hearted item is contrasted with a reminder of the sinister events in the rest of the world.
The news blurb that immediately follows it announces that Adolf Hitler, “Fuhrer of the Reich,” turned 50 just seven days after little Temple.
“It’s Fat-But Smug and, of All Things, Outdated”
Newsweek, November 29, 1965
Heh, this one’s on eBay. Newspapers. Pshah.
Newsweek October 3, 1966
Zap! Impress your friends by quoting Newsweek.
Today in awesome vintage Newsweek covers that need to be posted just because, c/o cleaning out my email: LSD. May 6, 1966. The horror!
For more vintage newsmagazine hilarity (and seriousness), follow our sistertumblr, nwkarchivist.
New Hampshire Primary 60 Years Ago
Jan. 13, 1958
Whoa! An early Newsweek infographic on how man can reshape nature!? Cool find. Also: “Hurricane fury.”
On This Date In 1980…
“Do you know what you just did?” the doorman asked Chapman dazedly. “I just shot John Lennon,” came the calm reply.
Newsweek December 22, 1980
Preserving Pearl Harbor Documents
Service jacket and salvaged service record, with Navy envelope, of William Wells. Wells enlisted at Kansas City, Mo. on Jan. 1, 1940, and died Dec. 7, 1941, at Pearl Harbor after achieving the rank of Signalman 3rd class. Also lost that day was his brother, Raymond Virgil Wells. They were one of 23 sets of brothers on the Arizona who died that day.
One of the most important decisions a conservator can make is not how to complete a treatment, but when NOT to treat. An important example of this can be found in the records salvaged from the U.S.S. Arizona after it was bombed on Dec. 7, 1941. These service records, which were held one level below the main deck, were not submerged in water but were subjected to heat, fire, and high humidity. Salvaged by the Navy and sealed in envelopes which contained the damaged documents, the records came to NARA in the 1950s and are now housed at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.
Note: This is the first in a series of posts on conservation of Pearl Harbor documents.
preservearchives: The preservation departments of the National Archives.
ON THIS DATE IN 1957: LAIKA LAUNCHED INTO ORBIT ON SPUTNIK II
A Dog’s Life
The first living creature to become a resident of outer space is strapped on her back in a tiny pressurized and heated cabin. The Husky in the now-dubbed “Muttnik” is covered with electrodes measuring blood pressure, heartbeat, and body temperature. She may be able to bark or whine into a miniature microphone and probably is being nourished intravenously by glucose. Why a dog? three reasons: (1) A dog does not perspire and so can be more readily confined in a limited-air cubicle, (2) a dog can register measurable emotions, and (3) a dog can be conditioned and trained to undergo severe physical trials.”
—Newsweek November 11, 1957
Laika did not survive the trip.
THE SADDEST ARCHIVES POST EVER.