Category: Public event

Miss California and Miss America


Miss California, Marguerite Skliris (far left), poses with other entrants and Miss America at the center. She was third runner-up in the Miss America 1939 competition.

“Patricia Mary Donnelly, Miss Michigan, became the first woman of her state to win the [Miss America] title. The pageant was staged on the world famous Steel Pier [Atlantic City, New Jersey] for the last time.”

Excerpt and image from .


A different woman,  Janet Mantell of Culver City, was named Miss California in this 1939 newspaper article. There may have been more than one beauty pageant using the title.


Chicago Tribune article and photo from .


Labor Day


Image: Los Angeles Times photo from .

“Sep. 4, 1939: A majorette leads one of the 20 bands in the annual Labor Day parade in downtown Los Angeles – a tradition going back to 1908.

“An article in the next morning’s Los Angeles Times reported:

Out of the ships and factories, stores and offices, organized labor came together yesterday, thousands strong, to march in industry’s and business’ vast peace army. They were celebrating Labor Day, the day of days to the union men.

American Federation of Labor unions put on a two-hour parade over a downtown Los Angeles mile-and-a-half course and Grand Marshal Ralph McMullen estimated that several score thousands of men and women marched, 6 to 12 abreast, in front of the reviewing stand on the City Hall steps. An untold number of thousands lined downtown Broadway to see the spectacle.”

Excerpt from image link above.

Minimum wage

“…in October 1939, the federal minimum wage was raised from 25 cents per hour to 30 cents per hour.”1 However, it appears that the California minimum wage from 1920 through 1943 was 33 cents per hour.2

With inflation, that 33 cents per hour wage would equate to $5.79 per hour in 2017.

1 Excerpt from .

2 From .

From .

Net neutrality day of action

In support of net neutrality, there is no regular content on this blog today.

“Airbnb, Spotify, and Dropbox are the latest major players to announce their participation in the Internet-Wide Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality scheduled for July 12th to oppose the FCC’s plan to slash Title II, the legal foundation for net neutrality rules that protect online free speech and innovation. Twitter, Reddit, Netflix, Amazon, Facebook, Google, Kickstarter, Etsy, Vimeo, Private Internet Access, Mozilla, OK Cupid, Imgur, PornHub, Medium, and hundreds of other major sites are also participating. ”

Excerpt from .

Indy 500 fatality was from Van Nuys


Floyd Roberts was born in South Dakota but lived nearly all of his life in California.  While he lived in Van Nuys, most of his racing was done in Glendale.  He raced for
23 years.

In 1938, Roberts won the Pole Position [at the Indy 500] with an average speed of 125.506 mph.  He led 92 laps to win the 26th Indy 500

“[In the 1939 race] driving well, but not all-out, he was following Robert Swanson… When Swanson skidded coming out of the 2nd turn on the backstretch, Roberts swerved to the outside of the track to miss him; but Sawnson’s car shot  toward the outer wall, momentarily locking wheels with Roberts’ car.  [Roberts’ car] cartwheeled over the outside retaining wall and crashed at the foot of the embankment at the Speedway golf course…  Roberts had a broken neck – the first 500 winner to die on the track.  He never regained consciousness and died in the early afternoon at Methodist Hospital.”

Excerpts and image from .


50th Rose Parade


A nice reserved seat cost $2.20 for the January 2 event. A spread from an unidentified magazine shows the Culver City entry at top center and some under-construction views. The float at the lower right is built directly onto an automobile. The parade theme was Golden Memories.

Here are details from the Tournament of Roses website:

The Rose Parade celebrates its 50th Anniversary. Grand Marshal Shirley Temple – the youngest GM ever – presides over the parade.

Richard and Pat Nixon enjoy their first date at the Duke vs. USC Rose Bowl Game. USC beats Duke, 7-3, with a famous come-from-behind touchdown drive as fourth-string quarterback Doyle Nave and second- string end “Antelope Al” Kreuger combine for four completed passes and a final 19-yard touchdown pass as time runs out.

The first telecast of a special event from the Tournament of Roses took place on station W6XAO of Los Angeles, with commentator Don Lee describing the January 1 evening preparations of the Royal Court. Parade and game held on Jan. 2.


Pasadena Star-News and Pasadena Post annual souvenir book.