Quote and Credit

Quote and Credit

Sally Rand the Ostrich Dance and the Amateur Photographer


A snapshot dated 1938 on the reverse, Sally Rand doing her famous ostrich feather fan dance in Dunham, North Carolina. Sally was born Helen Beck, but Cecil B. DeMille gave her the name she made famous. She worked in silent films, but when sound came in she went out. Maybe she sounded like an ostrich too. This photo was taken five years after her famous appearance at the Chicago World's Fair in which she was arrested 4 times in a single day for indecent exposure (even though, like here, she was wearing a body stocking...maybe) Amazingly, the Chicago performance is now available on youtube! It is remarkable to think some North Carolinian actually snuck a camera inside the show to take this picture, but I am glad he did, and I'm glad I found it tucked among a thousand other photographs. My favorite Sally Rand fact is that among her four husbands was one named Thurkel. This picture is pretty good and the photographer certainly waited until exactly the proper best moment. Maybe Thurkel went out front to take it.


Anonymous Snapshot 1938 Collection Jim Linderman

6 comments:

  1. Great finds...both the photo and the YouTube link! Ahhh...YouTube!

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  2. So much prettier than pole dancing.

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  3. That can't be Sally Rand! The legs are too short and chunky. And the hair is wrong, too. Perhaps an imitator?

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  4. I'm quite sure it is. The photo was taken years after the film shown here, and she'd been eating "road food" the whole time, so give Sally a break!
    Actually, it is labeled and dated in pencil on the reverse. It is an old photo I found in a huge pile for two dollars, so I can't imagine any reason for it to have been misidentified.

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  5. I am a die hard Sally Rand fan and I have a photo extremely dead on similar to this signed by Sally to Fanny! Fanny was another burlesque performer she worked with. It is so adorable that it is her fanny to Fanny. I LOVE Sally and if anyone wants to see more or know more feel free to ask me anything. Tahoequeen@charter.net Ramona

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