THE GOLDEN SHOWER
1917 was ushered in with all kinds of hope and prosperity. The automobile was taking hold as a utilitarian way of transportation and moving of freight. Skyscrapers were being built taller and taller using steel as the structural support.
War was imminent – not the ongoing war in Europe but a scuffle at the border between the United States and Mexico. (some things haven’t changed)!
Little did Americans realize that 1917 was going to be a pivotal year that would radically change America and the world forever.
SPEAKING OF AUTOMOBILE SHOWS
American business was booming. The automobile was touted as the machine to end road pollution was beginning to create its own ways of polluting the air, and the roads.
1917 marked the end of the first great era of American automobile development. 1917 and the score of years preceding it were know in Automobile history as the brass era. Most cars had brass on the radiator, surrounding the front windshield, the lights and other small accessories. Once America entered the war, the vast amounts of brass in manufacturing was commandeered by the munitions industry to aid in the war effort.
Crowded streets like the one depicted on the cover of the January belied the fact that America, through the use of the automobile was expanding to the suburbs. Cars were credited as the invention that ended the need for a front porch and for loosening the morals of the country. They were credited with helping to make the female half of the population independent. The auto enabled women to get out of the house.
FACT AND FICTION
Every generation looks nostalgically at the past. In this issue, that was created by a young Norman Rockwell, life is depicted as a mixture of past and future. Rockwell was an independent illustrator who worked primarily for the Saturday Evening Post. Pictured here is a slice of life, free and at ease. With no premonition of the change America was going to go through before the end of the year.