The Societal Differences Between the Male and Female Sex in the 1940s

By Brook Williams

The differences between the sexes in the 1940s is extremely prevalent when observing the media and literature around that time. While reading through The Utah Chronicle during the decade of the ’40s, it is evident throughout the ads and articles that women and men had distinct qualities that they were supposed to live up to in order to fit in with society. It was normal for ladies to be seen as objects that played very little roles in the development of the world. Typically, women held little control or power and were constantly being simplified to having no other purposes on this earth than being a beautiful caregiver to her husband and children.

Contrary, men were socially constructed to be a breadwinner, a worker, a gentleman, intelligent, and powerful. They were expected to provide for the women and family and uphold a high standard of manners. Both sexes came with the pressure to be a specific way. Rarely do you see any influence to be authentic to oneself in the 1940s. People had to fit the mold.

Picture3

Here, we can see the way that women and men were discussed in the ’40s. This is a picture of the “Helpful Hints to College Men” column, published in the Utah Chronicle on November 28, 1940.

Many articles published during the ’40s display these ideas through the language and conversation. One article that especially points this out was in the November 28, 1940, issue of The Utah Chronicle. The “Helpful Hints to College Men” column reported an etiquette book that the Mortar Woman’s Honor Society created called As We Do It. “I know some of us [women] do let things drop on purpose, but even then, you should be gentleman enough to pick them up.” (“Helpful Hints”) As We Do It was published in 1940 by the University of Utah, courtesy of the Mortar Board, which is a select group of female honorary students. It was a guide to help college students with their etiquette, including, style, telephone etiquette and dating etiquette.

An excerpt from the book discusses how women should be a “good sport” on dates and try out activities like skiing, even if they don’t have the desire to. “After your escort has unwrapped you several times from around the pine tree, he’ll probably only be too happy to let you play in the snow. But rest assured he will admire you all the more for your stamina, and will ask you again if you have enough fun to show him you’re a jolly sort.” (As We Do It, p. 21) This excerpt displays the general idea of women pleasing men and the assumption that the woman would fail and be weak during the activity.

Picture1

This is an image of the original AS WE DO IT booklet of etiquette, written and edited by Mortar Woman’s Honor Society. Photo by Brook Williams, communication student at The University of Utah.

A November 14, 1940, article in The Utah Chronicle includes several different examples of women being continuously referred to with an adjective describing their beauty. For example, “cute Beth,” “she said with a gleam in her lovely brown eyes,” “chimed in blonde Betty,” “petite Betty Lou,” or “attractive Nonie.” Words like dainty, fragile, tantalizing and petite are used to describe all women.

In one Utah Chronicle column called “Keep the Change,” men explained the nicknames they gave their girlfriends. A few of “the prize winners” were, “I call my girl Hinge, because she is something to a door,” “I call my girl Calibre because she is such a bore,” and, “I call my girl Hitler because she is sh-Nazi.” Men publicly spoke of their girlfriends in a condescending way, which in the 1940s was completely acceptable.

An excerpt from As We Do It discusses the fashion of men tipping their hats to other men, and when to do so. The authors suggest tipping hats to most men because “you might be asking him for a job or daughter sometime in the near future.” (p. 24) This further supports the sexist attitude of how men assumed “ownership” of a woman.

Picture2

AS WE DO IT is a thin booklet containing examples and information for both men and women about socially acceptable mannerisms. Many would be considered derogatory to both sexes now.

Another example of women being portrayed in a certain way is in an Atlantic article written by Megan Garber called, “‘When You Supervise a Woman’: The 1940s Instructional Manual.” This article includes instructional brochures of how to teach women about the utmost basic workplace protocol. Garber suggests that it is condescending and “is both ridiculous and hilarious by today’s standards, they’re also sort of sad: a reminder of how institutionalized sexism and its analogs can be, in the workplace and beyond.”

Not much has changed when comparing the general perception of gender roles from the 1940s to now. Books and magazines about “how to get the man/ woman of your dreams” are constantly being published and brainwashing people into an unauthentic way of living. Hopefully, society can continue with the progressive momentum we have had over the last 70 years, so the next generations can experience complete equality.

Brook Williams is a senior at The University of Utah. She plans on graduating in the spring of 2019 with a degree in communication.

Sources

Mortar Board, As We Do It, University of Utah, 1940.

 Helpful Hints to College Men,” Utah Chronicle, November 28, 1940, 7.

Freshman Women Express Views on Fraternities to Reveal Many Startling Conceptions,” Utah Chronicle, November 14, 1940, 5.

Marilla Barlow, “Keep the Change,” Utah Chronicle, November 20, 1940, 4.

Garber, Megan. “‘When You Supervise a Woman’: The 1940s Instructional Manual,” The Atlantic, August 27, 2012.

 

 

 

 

Elizabeth Hayes and Modern Dance at the University of Utah

By Allison Vernon

On August 26, 1940, the Salt Lake Telegram announced that the University of Utah had hired six new teachers for the upcoming school year, including Miss Elizabeth Hayes for the women’s physical education department. As Dorothy Stowe of the Deseret News reported upon her retirement in 1988, Hayes—the first modern dance teacher at the University of Utah—likely did not realize the profound impact she would have on the department and the university over her 48-year career. Additionally, it would have been impossible to foresee the impacts that World War II would have on the university and on modern dance in general.

Throughout twentieth-century America, modern dance has been heavily influenced by elements of context and history. The multicultural influence that occurred in the United States, particularly related to both world wars, had a profound impact on modern dance education, with many teachers incorporating styles and techniques that they learned from a variety of countries. While the world was at war in the 1940s, modern dance was becoming increasingly popular. During this time of conflict, instructors had to find a balance between preserving the diverse traditions of modern dance and establishing American contemporary dance as a unique entity. (Adams and Adams Strandberg, pp. 19-20)

Elizabeth Hayes Dance Prof

“Behind the Scenes” photograph of Joan Woodbury, Shirley Ririe, and Professor Elizabeth Hayes, “Orchesis Plans Production,” The Utah Chronicle, April 5, 1955, 1.

When Miss Elizabeth Hayes began teaching at the University of Utah, modern dance was still a fairly new concept, and the university was just beginning to incorporate the style into its curriculum. According to an article from The Utah Chronicle on April 24, 1941, Hayes was able to include modern dance as a part of the annual Orchesis performance at the University of Utah during her first year as an instructor, despite the classification of modern dance as a “physical education” course. While opinions of modern dance at this time were varied, on May 1, 1941, John Whitney with The Utah Chronicle called this style a “Worthy Endeavor” and praised Miss Hayes for her innovation and artistry.

On April 8, 1942, Hayes was again heralded by The Utah Chronicle for her work as director in a review of the modern dance program. According to the article, this recital included a piece emulating the plights of the Mormon pioneers, an original folk dance choreographed by Hayes, a repeat of the popular “Age and Youth” number from the previous year, and many short dances choreographed by the students themselves. In this program, Hayes made it clear that modern dance was about using art to portray emotions and experiences, both as a method of exploration and education, which aligns with Adams and Adams Strandberg’s analysis of modern dance as an educational tool. According to an article in the Salt Lake Telegram on April 16, 1942, not only was this program educational for the dance students themselves, but also for the audiences who had not experienced this technique before.

The impact of the war was often shown in the choreography of Orchesis programs during these years. According to The Utah Chronicle on March 24, 1943, the group put on a performance that incorporated dramatic interpretations of poetry, including one piece about “the Nazi murder of the inhabitants of … Lidice.” As explained by Gottlieb in The Kenyon Review, this technique of utilizing stories to inform movement is a hallmark of modern dance, as is the incorporation of current events. (pp. 149-150)

As the war became increasingly impactful on the University of Utah, Elizabeth Hayes and the modern dance department became involved in the effort. As reported by the Salt Lake Telegram on September 10, 1945, Hayes was made a faculty member of the ROTC training program on campus. Members of the University of Utah faculty from all departments were recruited in order to utilize their various areas of expertise, and her experience as a health and fitness professor made Hayes an ideal instructor for the program. Whether it was through defiant choreography or participating in training naval recruits, Hayes and her dancers were not left untouched by the conflict overseas.

According to Stowe in the Deseret News, one of the biggest challenges Hayes faced at first was this physical education classification because she was forced to focus on the fitness aspects of her education rather than creativity. In 1966, Hayes was able to move the dance program to “fine arts,” and by 1974, students could focus on either teaching, performing, or choreographing. Hayes was incredibly passionate about teaching, and although she could have boasted of her impressive record in the modern dance department, the meaningful connections she made with her students were what meant the most.

Elizabeth Hayes Photo

Photograph of Elizabeth Hayes, Salt Lake Tribune, Sept. 15, 2007.

Elizabeth Hayes left a lasting legacy at the University of Utah, both in her actions as a professor emerita and as a modern dance educator. According to her obituary in The Salt Lake Tribune (2007), throughout her career Hayes contributed to the creation of a dance major at the University of Utah, the implementation of a high school modern dance certification program, and the development of modern dance programs in schools across the country. Hayes understood that modern dance was an ever-evolving art form that must be in conversation with the context of its time. To quote Hayes herself: “The technique may have changed, but the basic philosophy, that dance is an art experience to which everyone should be exposed, has not changed. Students should learn to love movement, and recognize its communicative possibilities.” (Deseret News, 1988)

World War II had a profound impact on the world, and modern dance was no exception. Where some educators struggled to find a balance between preserving tradition and pursuing innovation, Hayes was able to build the University of Utah’s modern dance program from the ground up with an understanding of the past but an eye for the future.

Allison Vernon graduated in December 2018 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Studies.

Sources

“U. of U. Adds 6 New Teachers,” Salt Lake Telegram, August 26, 1940, 10.

“Dance Unit Sets Date for Revue,” The Utah Chronicle, April 24, 1941, 2.

John Whitney, “Worthy Endeavor,” The Utah Chronicle, May 1, 1941, 4.

“Dance Group Awaits Annual Recital,” The Utah Chronicle, April 8, 1942, 1.

“Patrons Hail Orchesis,” Salt Lake Telegram, April 16, 1942, 22.

“Orchesis Schedules Dance Drama,” The Utah Chronicle, March 24, 1943, 6.

“6 Added to ‘U’ Faculty, Navy ROTC Division,” Salt Lake Telegram, September 10, 1945, 7.

Gottlieb, Beatrice. “Dance Chronicle: New Trends in Modern Dance,” The Kenyon Review 12, no. 1 (Winter 1950): 148-155.

Stowe, Dorothy. “Elizabeth Hayes — She’s Nurtured Modern Dance From Bud To Blossom At the U,” Deseret News, May 1, 1988.

Adams, Carolyn and Adams Strandberg, Julia. “Access, Education, and Preservation through the Prism of American Dance,” Arts Education Policy Review 102, no. 1 (Fall 2000): 19-25.

“Elizabeth Hayes Obituary,” The Salt Lake Tribune, September 15, 2007.

Women Workers in World War II

By Riley Spear

women working2

Women in World War II performed men’s jobs. Used by permission, Utah State Historical
Society.

Women played a large role in helping the United States throughout World War II. With men being called from every home to come serve on the battlefields, it allowed women to enter the labor force and have opportunities in the military. The New York Times, on November 23, 1942, said, “Women want a real role to play in the planning of tomorrow.” Not only did they give their time in the home, but abroad as well.

Prior to the women’s commitment to serve in the workforce and military, The Utah Chronicle on November 25, 1942, stated there would be university classes offered to teach women certain techniques in case they were ever needed for combat. These classes included rigorous training such as wrestling, crawling through barrels, and other conditioning activities. This class excited and prepared women for their future job opportunities. Many superiors were thrilled at the chance to teach this class because it was a step toward changing the gender stereotype. Pathfinder magazine reported training classes continued to be held across the states for women in their late teens, to early forties. The training preparation classes were receiving positive feedback, and genuinely helping women in their future job roles they would pursue to help the war cause.

women working3

Women worked in the military air force in World War II. Used by permission, Utah State Historical
Society.

The attack on Pearl Harbor was a moment in history where all citizens had to come together as a team in order to survive the war, and women were prepared to give their aid. The Utah Chronicle, on December 3, 1942, reported that the war was asking for University of Utah women with scientific training such as engineering, physics, chemistry, mathematics and accounting. The need for help was dire, and it was urgent women were made aware of their need. The War Manpower Commission posted an advertisement that read, “Longing won’t bring him back sooner…GET A WAR JOB,” in order to encourage women to help. Posters such as these motivated women to serve their country and also help their men. Women responded, coming to serve in the country as industrial workers, and abroad filling the gaping hole in the U.S. labor force.

In San Diego, CLICK Magazine reported on February 1, 1944, “Women were becoming letter carriers, bus drivers, high altitude window washers, milk deliverers, and office workers.” An assortment of positions were left vacant and women were fulfilling them without hesitation. The American Magazine wrote an issue in January 1943 on a young women named Dorothy Vogley. When the war called for women employees she seized an opportunity at Timken Rolling Bearing Co. as a testing machine operator. “At first,” noted the article, “the strange hours put her at odds end with the world, but now she believes working in the war industry has made her a new, more self-reliant person.” (p. 11) The war was able to offer women a chance to prove their worth, and spread awareness that women were capable. In some cases, such as Vogley’s, it was also a realization and an inspiration to other women.

working women

Women working alongside each other in hard hats and overalls. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Women’s involvement in the war was a huge turning for the United States, and in gender stereotypes. “The war may have demonstrated to employers that women could function well in jobs that had previously been male domains,” wrote Claudia D. Golding in her research article “The Role of World War II in the Rise of Women’s Employment.” After the war, and when men returned, many women were forced out of their jobs. However, within five years the percentage of women in the labor force increased dramatically. Golding’s data prove that during wartime 24.7 percent of the labor force participation rates were made up of women, and by 1950, five years after the war had ended, it increased to 26 percent. This demonstrates the determination and perseverance women continued to strive for during and following the war.

The Utah Chronicle on December 3, 1942, reported, “Women are needed, and the time is past stereotypes.” It is hard to see light in horrible sequences of events such as war. However, women took it by the reigns and demonstrated their worth, and value. The U.S. would have suffered greatly without the hard work women gave in all fields of occupations. The recognition deserved for their performance is endless. “This is a women’s war as well as a man’s,” said Oveta Culp Hobby, director of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps, in the 1942 New York Times story.

Riley Spear is a senior at the University of Utah. She is studying journalism and will graduate in spring 2019.

Sources

Advertisement for women workers, Office for the War Manpower Commission, 1944.

San Diego: A Woman’s Town,” Click, February 1, 1944.

Girl on the Midnight Shift,” American, January 1943.

Amazons of Aberdeen,” Pathfinder, July 1942.

“7,000,000 Women Workers Seen in War Plants before Peace Comes,” New York Times, November 23, 1942, 1.

“Coed Commandos Out to Win War and Men,” Utah Chronicle, November 24, 1942, 4.

“Dean of Women Lists Coed Opportunities,” Utah Chronicle, December 3, 1942, 3.

Golden, Claudia. “The Role of World War II in the Rise of Women’s Employment,” American Economic Review 81, no. 4 (September 1991): 741-56.

The History of Cadet Nurses and Their Struggle for Veterans Rights

By Catherine Simmons

In the years leading up to WWll, jobs were in short supply. However, once America entered the war, that all changed. Because so many men signed up, employees of every kind were desperately needed. Nurses were perhaps needed most.

cadet1

University of Utah–Cadet Nurses War Vets. Salt Lake Tribune Negative Collection, Utah State History.

In 1943, Frances Bolton introduced a bill to create a governmental program to recruit and train nurses. (“Short History”) It passed just a few months later. This led to a countrywide mass recruitment, particularly in universities. The University of Utah formed a club for all Cadet Nurses and even practiced drill with other ASTP, or Army Specialized Training Program, students. They often got in uniform and stood in formations and even ran practice exercises. (Cutler) There were numerous advertisements calling women to join the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps, similar to the advertisements calling men to join the service. At one point, 80 percent of nurses in the United States were part of the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps. (“Short History”)

cadet2

St. Marks Hospital Cadet Nurses. Salt Lake Tribune Negative Collection, Utah State History.

Their 30-month training was rigorous and demanding. There was a lot of school work as well as training, not to mention the strict curfews. (Bergman) But they all said they felt an obligation to help the young men and their country.

One nurse, Eunice E. Smolak, was assigned to Bushnell General Hospital where she treated wounded servicemen and prisoners of war. She wrote about how difficult it was, emotionally and physically, to care for those wounded soldiers, and that she would never forget those experiences. (“We Remember”) Each nurse was greatly affected by what she saw and heard in those hospitals. It was not an easy job. It was physically, emotionally and psychologically demanding. However, despite the hardship each cadet nurse faced, they were not considered veterans.

Numerous pleas have been submitted asking to change the status of cadet nurses to eligible veterans. A wave of activism has swept across the country. Former cadet nurses are sending letters and calling all their cadet friends and acquaintances, letting everyone know what they are trying to achieve. Letters were sent out begging for signatures on their petition. Cadet nurses and their families have sent letters to the editor in newspapers all over the country, including the Columbia (MO) Daily Tribune, asking for recognition of their efforts and sacrifice. The U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps is, in fact, the only uniformed force that has not received veterans status. That means they do not qualify for any of those benefits and services. (Karins)

On February 6, 2017, H.R. 1168, the United States Cadet Nurse Corps Equity Act, was introduced to Congress. It states that any member of the United States Nurse Corps who served between July 1, 1943, and December 31, 1948, is qualified to full veteran status, including all benefits, although those benefits won’t be back-paid. (Lowey) Seventeen representatives cosponsored the bill. However, despite all the effort put in by so many, nothing has come of it. Almost two years later and it has still not passed in the House of Representatives.

Thousands of women sacrificed so much of their time and energy, just doing their duty to their country and their fellow Americans and the least we can do is give them what they are owed. If we wait much longer, there will be no nurses left to recognize.

Catherine Simmons is a Utah resident who has a degree in communication from the University of Utah. She is married with a beautiful puppy.  She loves history and reading and dreams of becoming an author. 

Sources

Robert Cutler, “Campus in Crisis,” Utah Chronicle, November 4, 1943.

Belcher, David. “Cadet Corps Seeks Congressional Recognition: World War II Nurses Petition Congress for Veterans’ Benefits, Honors,” American Journal of Nursing 103, no. 3 (2005): 130-31.

Doona, Mary Ellen. “Cadet Nurse Corps,” Massachusetts Report on Nursing 11, no. 1 (March 2013): 6.

Karins, Jessica. “U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps members seek veteran status,” Columbia Daily Tribune, August 20, 2018.

Bergman, Julia. “All but forgotten: Cadet nurses reflect on service during WWII,” The Day, November 3, 2018.

Rep. Nita Lowey, H.R. 1168, United States Cadet Nurse Corps Equity Act.

Alissa Sauer, “Overdue Recognitions for WWII Cadet Nurse Corps,” Veteran Aid, April 3, 2018

Short History of Military Nursing: U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps,” Ebling Library, University of Wisconsin-Madison, August 18, 2017.

“We Remember: Eunice E. Smolak,” USCadetNurse.org.

Elaine Cannon: The Feminist LDS Leader Who Got Her Start at The Utah Chronicle

By Alaikia Miller

with camera

Elaine Cannon at the KSL television studio, where she hosted a weekly program for teenagers as reported in the October 7, 1949, issue of The Bulletin.

Elaine Cannon, born Elaine Anderson, graduated from the University of Utah in 1943 with a degree in sociology. During her time at the university, Anderson contributed light commentary pieces to The Utah Chronicle. She went on to write for The Deseret News, authored over 50 books, and became the eighth president of the Young Women organization in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a position she held from 1978-1984. Cannon, who died in 2003, is remembered for her dedication to her family, to the church and to young women and youth around the globe. (“Elaine Cannon Dies”)

Interested in writing early in life, Anderson started a school paper while attending junior high. She also launched a weekly paper following high school graduation. (Woodger, p. 183) The Salt Lake Telegram reported on March 6, 1939, that the Red and Black, the paper Anderson helped start for West High School, would be the first “home-printed paper” at that school.

During her time at the University of Utah, Anderson wrote for The Utah Chronicle, the school’s independent student paper. Her contributions to the Chronicle were light commentaries on current events, both general and campus specific. In an October 1940 issue of The Utah Chronicle, Anderson is listed as the assistant women’s page editoran achievement that isn’t mentioned in the various publications about Anderson’s life and work.

Picture1

One of Elaine Cannon’s earliest articles in The Utah Chronicle, which appeared in the October 10, 1940, issue.

The fifth page of The Utah Chronicle was dedicated to articles written by and for women attending the University of Utah. The “Women’s Page” was established in September 1935, first appearing in the September 26 issue. In one of Anderson’s earliest articles published in The Utah Chronicle, “College Transfers Give Opinions on U. of U.,” she shared the opinions of University of Utah students who transferred from other institutions. Anderson noted that young women who joined the university appreciated the number of tall men and the dancing styles on campus. Throughout her student writing career, Anderson would offer comments on campus fraternities and advice for freshman women. She also contributed a recurring column called “Campus Ramblings.”

group cannon

Elaine Cannon with her husband, James Cannon, during his 1964 campaign for governor, as published in the June 25 issue of the Vernal Express.

Anderson also wrote for The Salt Lake Telegram while attending the university and would eventually become society editor for the Deseret News, where she wrote under her married name, Cannon. (Woodger, pp. 183-84) Throughout her career, she wrote numerous articles for various publications, including Seventeen. (Woodger, p. 178) Anderson, who wed in March 1943, also briefly hosted a local weekly television program for teenagers, which was announced in the October 7, 1949, issue of The Bulletin, a small publication for residents of the Sugar House neighborhood. Cannon also contributed articles and served as society editor.

At the time of her appointment as Young Women president, the women’s liberation movement was in full swing. Cannon’s appointment was very near groundbreaking, as she became the first president who was employed outside of the home. She balanced the duties of being a full-time mother of six, her work as a writer and her duties to the church. Cannon spoke often about the balance of her duties and how she was always looking for ways her career could help serve the church. (Woodger, p. 175)

While she herself worked outside of the home, her focus as Young Women president was still on advocating for a woman’s duty to her family, as this was a priority of church leadership at the time. She noted that while having a family and a career was an option for her, all women are different. What was fine for her life might not work for someone else. (Woodger, p. 176)

adversity

The cover of Elaine Cannon’s book, which was published in 1987 by Deseret Book Company.

When ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) began in 1971, the LDS church struggled to form a conclusive opinion. Leadership seemed adamant that the bill was vague and unnecessary. Cannon agreed with the opinions of church leaders. However, the bill still inspired her to make efforts toward providing security and empowerment to women in the church. In response to the discussion over the ERA, Cannon helped create a separate magazine for youth in the church, restructured the Young Women General Board, implemented a Sunday class specifically for young women and established the first LDS women’s meeting. (Woodger, pp. 181-83)

Cannon wasn’t just dedicated to serving young women, but all youth. In 1955, Seventeen magazine provided Cannon an award for her support of teen activities and she served as a delegate at the 1959 White House Conference on Youth. (“Elaine Cannon Dies”)

Elaine Anderson Cannon’s writing career began early and carried on throughout her entire life. However, her work as a writer and leader within the LDS church barely scratches the surface. Cannon had a brimming life, marked by her dedication to her faith and her community.

Alaikia Marielle Miller is a senior at the University of Utah and is set to graduate in May 2019 with a B.S. in communications and journalism. Alaikia is currently a senior staff writer for The Daily Utah Chronicle and can be found across all platforms under @mariellerrrr.

Sources

“West High Will Celebrate First ‘Home-Printed’ Paper,” Salt Lake Telegram, March 6, 1939, 10.

“The Utah Chronicle: List of staff members,” Utah Chronicle, October 24, 1940, 4.

“Women’s Page,” Utah Chronicle, September 26, 1935, 5.

Elaine Anderson, “College Transfers Give Opinions on U. of U.,” Utah Chronicle, October 10, 1940, 5.

Elaine Anderson, “Freshman Women Express Views on Fraternities to Reveal Many Startling Conceptions,” Utah Chronicle, November 14, 1940, 5.

Elaine Anderson, “Scribe Ponders Resolutions; Submits Advise to Frosh,” Utah Chronicle, January 9, 1941, 5.

Elaine Anderson, “Campus Ramblings,” Utah Chronicle, January 16, 1941, 5.

“Television for Teen-Agers” The Bulletin, October 7, 1949, 3.

Elaine Cannon dies at age 81,” Church News, May 22, 2003.

Woodger, Mary Jane. “Elaine Anderson Cannon, Young Women General President: Innovations, Inspiration, and Implementations,” Journal of Mormon History 40, no. 4 (Fall 2014): 171-207.

Image Sources

“Group at Dine A Ville Motel,” Vernal Express, June 25, 1964.

Cannon, Elaine. Adversity. Salt Lake City, Utah: Deseret Book Company, 1987.

Elaine Anderson, “College Transfers Give Opinions on U. of U.,” Utah Chronicle, October 10, 1940, 5.

“Television for Teen-Agers,” Bulletin, October 7, 1949, 3.

WAVES and SPARS: Women go to War in 1943

By Matt McPherson

At the height of the second World War, university students across the nation were forced to withdraw from school and join military forces. First the men, but with a high demand, women also became part of the war’s history. Women not only entered the workforce, but they broke gender barriers by joining military forces. In 1943 President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service) and the SPARS (United States Coast Guard Women’s Reserve). Historian Roger D. Launius discussed women’s impact on the war saying, “Not only did women enter the workforce in a big way, but many of the other traditional sexual boundaries were eroded by the war.”

Screen Shot 2018-11-26 at 11.36.37 AMAs reported by the Salt Lake Telegram on Tuesday, January 11, 1943, Lieutenant Tova L. Petersen, a recruitment officer for the WAVES and SPARS, arrived in Salt Lake City to interview applicants. Just one month later the first Utah women would enlist in the military.

The Utah Chronicle reported on February 25, 1943, that twelve women from the University of Utah were assigned and enlisted to make up Utah’s first contingent of the WAVES and SPARS by the Navy Recruiting Station in Salt Lake City. In order to enlist, women had to be between the ages of 20 and 36, some schooling was required, and they could not be married to a man in the same military branch. The women had to complete four months of training of which nine participants were WAVES and three were SPARS. Following their training, they were assigned to active duty around the United States, or sent to schools for “technical training by Navy experts.” Utah continued to enlist women to reach a quota; to do so, the naval officer from San Francisco remained in Salt Lake City to approve applications.

A brochure titled Facts About the WAVES and SPARS addressed the importance of women joining the armed forces. The author wrote, “Never in history has there been such an urgent need for American women to serve their country. This is total war — a war in which every woman as well as every man must play a part.” The brochure gave complete instructions on how and where to apply, what living situations would be like, and the basic requirements to enlist as WAVES or SPARS.

On March 19, 1943, the Sugar House Bulletin shared an image with a brief description of women in training, titled, “Future WAACS, WAVES, SPARS Start Training.” The trainees are shown doing jumping exercises on a springboard.

Screen Shot 2018-11-26 at 11.35.30 AM

On March 8, 1943, The Utah Chronicle published a letter from Florence Henrichsen, a WAVES member and former University of Utah student. Henrichsen wrote from Massachusetts to her sister and told her of her daily life. There was no more staying up late and no more everyday clothing, which she referred to as “civies” — only uniforms were allowed now. Henrichsen did not express any resentment for her decision and seemed quite happy. She wrote of her meals and the training she partook in. She ended the letter to her sister with a little encouragement: “Come and be a WAVE with me – you would love it.”

Reporting for KSL in August 2014, Peter Rosen shared the story of Utah’s own Kathryn Klaveano who served in the Navy WAVES. Klaveano wanted to be a part of the action. She is quoted as saying, “I told them I will go AWOL before I would be a secretary.” And she was more than that. Klaveano was a flight orderly on domestic military flights “from Newfoundland to Miami and to Hawaii.” Another Utah woman, Ora Mae Hyatt, actually served outside of the U.S. and made her way to Okinawa. Unconcerned with her surroundings, Hyatt said, “We were young. We didn’t dwell on the danger we were in.” (Rosen)

World War II brought an urgency upon the United States and called for young men and woman to help fight. President Roosevelt’s establishment of WAVES and SPARS gave women the opportunity to join the war effort. In February 1943 the first twelve Utah women were given the chance to help shape America’s future military and they did just that.

Matt McPherson graduated from The University of Utah in December 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Communication.

Sources

“Future WAACS, WAVES, SPARS Start Training,” Sugar House Bulletin, March 19, 1943, 3.

“From Former U Coed—Now WAVE,” Utah Chronicle, March 8, 1943, 3.

“First WAVE, SPAR Unit Accepted,” Utah Chronicle, February 25, 1943, 3.

“Women Wanted in WAVES, SPARS,” Salt Lake Telegram, January 11, 1943, 18.

Advertisement/image of U.S. Army announcement, Utah Chronicle, January 14, 1943, 2.

Facts About the WAVES and SPARS,” n.p., 1943.

Rosen, Peter. “Utah Woman at War: Stories of Service in WWII,” KSL, August 28, 2014.

Launius, Roger, D. “World War II in Utah,” Utah History to Go.

 

Images provided by J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah

Wanted: Airline Stewardesses for United Airlines

By Stella Lee

United Airlines was looking for young women with an interest in flying the nation’s airways as a stewardess, according to an advertisement published in The Utah Chronicle on January 10, 1946. There were some qualifications that applicants needed to meet. The women had to be between 21 and 26 years of age, stand between 5’2” and 5’6”, weigh no more than 125 pounds, be unmarried and in good health, have good vision, be a United States citizen, and have completed two years of college or be a registered nurse. The title of stewardess, or flight attendant, is a job aimed at airplane passengers’ comfort and safety. In the middle of the 1900s, people preferred the description flight attendant rather than stewardess because the latter had a negative connotation and meant “flying waitresses.” (Bean-Mellinger)

UAL

Photo by Shipler Studio. Special Collections, J. Willard Marriott Library, The University of Utah.

The first flight attendant had appeared when passenger air travel began in the early 1920s. At the beginning, they were generally the sons of businessmen who had financed the airlines. However, as airplanes became public transportation, airlines needed official employees as flight attendants for passenger safety and service. Ellen Church, who was the first female stewardess hired in 1930 by United Airlines, opened the door for women stewardesses even though the atmosphere in 1930 was not favorable for women flight attendants because the ability of women was always in question. (Latson)

However, working as a stewardess—despite the pay, prestige, and adventure—was actually not as great as it seemed because the women were strictly controlled. (Harris) For example, they were not allowed to marry and most airlines had strict criteria for their height, weight and appearance. Victoria Vantoch, author of The Jet Sex: Airline Stewardesses and the Making of an American Icon, writes that applicants had to meet draconian airline beauty requirements, which embodied America’s mainstream ideal of beauty.

airline

Group photo of airline employees at the Salt Lake City Airport. Special Collections, J. Willard Marriott Library, The University of Utah.

This naturally led to beauty-based gender inequality, sexism and increased gender bias. Some stewardesses were not hired, even when their ability was outstanding, due to appearance. Airlines also discriminated against Black women. Ruth Carol Taylor, a journalist and registered nurse, broke the color barrier in 1957 after filing suit against Trans World Airline. (Van Houten)

Fifteen years later, two White Eastern Airlines flight attendants took the company to court on charges of discriminatory weight and grooming regulations. The organization Stewardesses for Women’s Rights was subsequently founded to address gender discrimination and advocated for reform until 1976.

Due to these efforts, problems with gender-based inequality were moderated and regulations were put in place. Nowadays, gender bias for flight attendants is mostly resolved, but society still requires our attention.

Stella Lee graduated in December 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Strategic Communication from the University of Utah.

 Sources

Advertisement for United Airlines stewardesses, Utah Chronicle, January 10, 1946, 3.

Latson, Jennifer. “Hired for Their Looks, Promoted for Their Heroism: The First Flight Attendants,” Time, May 15, 2015.

Harris, Tom. “How Airline Crews Work,” HowStuffWorks.com.

Bean-Mellinger, Barbara. “What Is the Difference Between a Stewardess and a Flight Attendant?” Chron.com, June 29, 2018.

Van Houten, Matt. “Taylor, Ruth Carol,” BlackPast.org.

“Women in the Skies: The birth of the Stewardess”,Ms.blog, September 16, 2014. 1-2

Vantoch, Victoria. The Jet Sex: Airline Stewardesses and the Making of an American Icon. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013.

 

Why You Would Have Rushed a Sorority at The University of Utah in 1941

By Mallory K. Arnold

The_U_Spreads_The

A portion of the article, “The U Spreads the Welcome Mat,” from the 1942 Utonian yearbook.

Greek organizations have always been a popular topic as well as a controversial one. With sororities and fraternities still going strong in 2018, what might it have been like to try to join such organizations during wartime, specifically for women?

The Utah Chronicle published an article in January 1941 where impartial statistics were given about each house at the University of Utah. According to said article, there were nine sororities and seven fraternities present during the time. It let the women and men trying to rush a house know the year all sororities/fraternities were founded nationally, when they were founded at the U, the address of the house, and who their current executive board was.

Right before Spring Recruitment began in 1941, the Utah Chronicle published an article about university men offering their opinions on each sorority. Although some comments given in the article were nice, others were not. Richard Blackhurst, who was part of a fraternity, said, “The Tri Deltas are plenty cute but their mental capacity has not developed to the highest degree.” Another man named Dave Boyer, who was unaffiliated, said, “Chi Omegas had the most beautiful group of girls on campus.” It seemed as if these men were trying to persuade women to join certain houses based upon their outsider opinion.

Going to college and joining Greek life can be a difficult process. Luckily for the women looking to join Greek life that year, the Sorority Council decided to publish its first-ever University of Utah Rushee Handbook. According to an article titled “Sorority Council to Publish Rushee Handbook,” it gave advice to freshmen with tips to rushees, a rushee’s lexicon, and do’s & don’ts. Rules and regulations, as well as how much dues were, also were listed in the handbook that presented a brief history of each house. The editor of the new book was Martha Havenor. In an October 1941 article by the Utah Chronicle, Havenor was listed as part of the sorority known as Tri-Delta, which made her the perfect person to write the handbook on rushing a sorority.

Sorority pin ad 1.23.41.3

Utah Chronicle, January 23, 1941, page 3.

Another reason rushing a sorority became enticing was because the Utah Chronicle always had advertisements about pins, dances, and other things going on in Greek life. This made readers more curious as well. In 1947 Marian Dawson wrote an article titled “Why I Like Sorority Life” in which she spoke about her decision to pledge a sorority. She said the benefits one gained from belonging to a sorority depended entirely on what that individual contributed. Dawson explained that if one desired companionship of the highest type, she would find happiness in a sorority.

After all of this information on rushing, the 1940s decision to join a sorority would vary from person to person. In conclusion, deciding to rush a sorority in the 1940s seems a lot like it does now.

Mallory Arnold is a junior at the University of Utah majoring in communication with a minor in parks, recreation, and tourism.

Sources

Advertisement for Parry & Parry, Utah Chronicle, January 23, 1941, 3.

“Statistics Give Impartial View of Campus Greek Groups,” Utah Chronicle, January 23, 1941, 5.

“University Men Reveal Opinions Concerning Qualities of Female Greek Organizations,” Utah Chronicle, January 16, 1941, 5.

“Fraternity Row Makes Final Plans for Formal Greek Rush Season,” Utah Chronicle, January 23, 1941, 5.

“Introducing Martha Havenor,” Utah Chronicle, October 2, 1941, 4.

Dawson, Marian. “Why I Like Sorority Life,” The Iowa Homemaker 27, no. 3 (1947).

 

 

 

 

The Clawsons’ Shop and Their Community

By Porter L. Anderson

Screen Shot 2018-11-26 at 2.30.10 PMThe Clara M. Clawson Shop was a clothing store for women located at 57 S. Main Street in Salt Lake City. Mrs. Clawson’s advertisements are found all throughout magazines and newspapers during the late 1930s, the 1940s and into the 1950s. The store was the passion project of Clara and was managed by her husband Seldon Clawson after it began to be recognized as a high-end clothing shop in Salt Lake City.

The Clawsons took out a number of advertisements during this time throughout different publications in the Utah Valley, including The Salt Lake Tribune and Utah Chronicle. The advertisements really gave a sense of the individuals who ran the shop and their connection to the community.

Screen Shot 2018-11-26 at 2.27.57 PMIn a congratulatory ad published in the May 28, 1942, issue of the Utah Chronicle, the text states that “Mrs. Clara M. Clawson offers sincere congratulations to the graduates.” The couple tried to demonstrate they were there to help the graduates who needed them rather than trying to sell them anything. The ad gains more strength because everything around it is listing products that should be purchased, such as suit coats and new materials for schoolwork. This friendly congratulatory message is different from the surrounding ads and draws the reader of the newspaper into wondering who these people are and why their ads look so different.

Screen Shot 2018-11-26 at 2.30.01 PMThe Clawsons clearly made a consistent effort to make themselves known in the community as a friendly place. Published advertisements show that the couple was dedicated to the store that featured high-end clothing with a friendly, welcoming feel. Many of the ads are tailored to reach out to specific people during certain times. For example, an advertisement published in The Salt Lake Tribune around Mother’s Day in 1950 states that patrons should bring their mother into the store to pick out what she wants for her holiday gift. This is another subtle ad that invites a specific group into the store to meet those friendly individuals who are trying to curry favor with the community.

scan0030The Clawsons took out a number of advertisements around the 1930s to 1950s, each working to build their image as a “Mom and Pop” store dedicated to their community and creating a friendly presence. Many of the advertisements were written in a way to make their readers feel like they were welcome there, which could be a reason why the Clara Clawson Shop was open for more than 65 years even during times of war and economic downturn.

The Clawsons were very committed to helping their community, whether that was through Clara’s work as the treasurer of the Service Star Legion, a group for mothers in wartime, or Seldon’s work for the building of the Latter-day Saints church. The couple owned a business that they worked to build but they also loved their community. This was evident in their one-of-a-kind personal advertisements. The Clawsons are the type of people who cared and helped others, which was a huge benefit to their community, especially during WWII.

Porter L. Anderson is a senior at the University of Utah studying communication with an emphasis in journalism. He is very passionate about web content creation including writing articles for different online outlets as well as web design. Anderson hopes that he will be able to use the experience and education he has gained at the University to find a way to use online resources to help others.

Sources

Selden Irwin Clawson and Clara Isabella Morris Clawson,” FamilySearch, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Advertisement, Salt Lake Tribune, May 14, 1950, 3.

Advertisement, Salt Lake Tribune, February 26, 1945, 8.

Advertisement, Utah Chronicle, May 28, 1942, 3.

 

The Cadet Nurse Corps at the University of Utah

By Tyson Aldridge

The Cadet Nurse Corps was established across the country between the years 1943 and 1948 to help with the demand for nurses during the war. According to authors Willever and Parascandola, “124,065 nurses were graduated from the Cadet Nurse Corps, making the Corps one of the largest and most fruitful Federal nursing programs in history.” (Parascandola and Willever, p. 455)

Screen Shot 2018-11-19 at 9.02.15 AM

Image from Public Health Reports.

The need for nurses was at an all-time high after the United States entered World War II and as a result, nursing leaders were trying to find solutions to supply enough nurses for the war. The need for nurses increased as the war went on, but other higher paying jobs were taking women away from the nursing profession. Consequently, the Public Health Service created in June 1943 the Cadet Nurse Corps to focus on improvement of nursing education and recruitment of more nursing students. If admitted, a student would receive scholarships that covered tuition and fees, as well as a monthly stipend. The expectation for the nurses was to graduate in 30 months, as opposed to the usual 36 months, and perform nursing services for the duration of the war. The schooling was broken into sections. The first nine months the nurses were known as “probies.” “Junior cadets” were in the middle of their schooling and attended classes as well as applying their learning in the field at actual hospitals. During the final training period, the students were known as “senior cadets” and would be placed where nurses were needed.

Screen Shot 2018-11-19 at 8.59.56 AM

Image from Public Health Reports.

Like many other universities across the country, the University of Utah was part of this program. In the very first semester of the program, 150 women registered. To help boost morale and get the nurses excited for the upcoming program, a representative from the national nursing council came to the University of Utah and spoke to the freshman students at Kingsbury Hall. The representative, Mildred E. Newton, spoke about the urgent need for 65,000 nurses and the chance to serve the country they loved.

From the very beginning, the University of Utah was extremely supportive of the Cadet Nurse Program and the students in it. In the Utah Chronicle on September 23, 1943, Mrs. Hazelle Baird Maequin, an assistant professor of nursing education at the University of Utah, said, “The 15 nurses in the cadet corps are going to make up an important part of the wartime life on the campus this year.” The nurses were not kept from students; the university wanted them to be recognized and supported. This was shown when Carlson Hall, a dining room and living area on campus, was renovated to accommodate the nurses in the program. The hall normally would fit around 76 people, but after a few renovations and converting the hall to cafeteria style, 154 people could fit in the hall. Most of those 154 were nurses in the program, and all of the nurses lived at Carlson Hall.

A lot of the nurses as they went through schooling at Utah would receive hands-on training at nearby LDS Hospital, and most of the time when they were there, their living arrangements would change as well. Once a nurse completed her 30 or 36 months of training, she would receive a certificate of nursing and would be placed at either LDS hospital or one of the nearby local hospitals as a civilian nurse, or she would be placed in one of the branches in the military to serve as a nurse there.

Overall, the Cadet Nurse Corps program at the University of Utah was a great success. The university made the nurses’ time in school comfortable and enjoyable by providing places to live and places to study and eat. The University of Utah also made sure that the Cadet nurses were included in student activities on campus, and made sure that other students were aware of the program and its importance. This program helped improve nursing education, as well as prompting federal aid for graduate school studies for nurses. The effect is still felt today around local and national hospitals and nursing now is a respected profession. Modern-day nursing definitely got a kickstart because of this program.

Tyson Aldridge is a senior at the University of Utah. He is majoring in journalism communication.

Sources

“Campus Trains Cadet Nurses,” Utah Chronicle, September 23, 1943.

Helen Chamberlin, “Registration Swells Despite War,” Utah Chronicle, September 23, 1943.

“Nursing Official Outlines Program,” Utah Chronicle, October 21, 1943.

Walter A. Shead, “Continuation of Nurses Training to Provide for Thousands of Qualified Hospital Assistants,” Pleasant Grove Review, September 21, 1945.

War Affects Carlson Hall,” Utah Chronicle, September 23, 1943.

Kathleen Emerson Britton, “U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps,” Rochester Regional Health.

Parascandola, John and HeatherWillever. “The Cadet Nurse Corps, 1943-48,” Public Health Reports 109 no. 3 (May-June 1994): 455-457.