Tag Archives: Publicity

Free Beer For Life – 1950

Drink Up, While It Lasts

Free Beer For Life 11 18 1950

Free Beer For Life

New York – Chief Petty Officer Kenneth Slamon, 33, of Portland, OR, samples first installment of a lifetime’s supply of beer, which a brewery President awarded him. The beer biggie was watching a television quiz show on which Slamon was co-winner of a $6,350 prize. The sailor said he’d spend his share on “an annuity for life — in beer.” This impressed the beer exec so much that he has arranged for Slamon to get free beer for life. Credit (ACME) 11-18-50

The beer company was the Jacob Ruppert Brewery famous not only for its Knickerbocker and Ruppert beer, but for its longtime owner Jacob Ruppert (1867-1939) who also owned the New York Yankees.

As the news caption notes, Fred Linder, president of the Jacob Ruppert Brewery happened to be watching the program Chief Slamon appeared on and said, “If Chief Slamon wants cold beer so much, then we don’t want his money. He’ll get free beer for the rest of his life.”

The brewery then began sending him a free case of beer every month no matter where he was stationed by the navy.

Unfortunately for Chief Petty Officer Slamon, the Ruppert Brewery closed its doors in 1965 shortchanging his lifetime supply of free beer.

Slamon, a Pearl Harbor survivor and veteran of World War II, Korea and Vietnam, lived another 32 years without his free beer, and passed away August 4, 1997.

Posture Queen And The Creation Of The World War II Pin-Up Girl

Stand Up Straight Please, This Is A Publicity Stunt

Lillian McKevitt

New York, NY – Miss Lillian McKevitt, of Jackson Heights, New York is chosen as “Posture Queen” from among forty beautiful Walter Thornton models who demonstrated exercises to provide good posture in celebration of Good Posture Week (May 4-11), has her posture matched by Mr. Thornton with that of Sgt. Lester Hare of the military police of the Canadian army, who attended the matinee performance on the penthouse terrace of the Mayflower Hotel.  –  April 27, 1942: Acme News Photograph

By whom Lillian McKevitt was chosen Posture Queen is not noted in the news photo caption.

The interesting story here is about the modeling agency Lillian came from, The Walter Thornton Modeling Agency which began its business in 1931.

A June 27, 1948 Associated Press article describes how Walter Thornton created the World War II “Pin-Up Girl.”  Strangely this is based only on Walter Thornton’s assertion.

The story goes, “while in the service, Thornton pinned his girlfriend’s picture to the canvas wall of his tent. The pin put a hole in the tent and the Sergeant put Thornton on K.P. (Kitchen Punishment duty).  The new soldiers however lived in lush barracks and could pin up pictures of pretty girls without punching a hole in the wall. So one day in 1940, Thornton dug out about 5,000 photos of girls from his modeling agency and sent them to Fort Dix, NJ. The idea was a winner and the World War II pin-up girl was born.”

Allegedly.

Thornton also put on a hair-pulling match in 1940 at Palisades Amusement Park which we previously profiled here.

Time Magazine noted in 1954, “He (Thornton) also has shown a talent for getting publicity for Walter Thornton.” Continue reading

Babe Ruth Catches A Baseball From An Airplane

Babe Ruth, Out Standing In His Field, 1926

Yes, I know that is a terrible pun.

Here is an apocryphal story about Babe Ruth and this little known feat.

In this rare news photograph, Babe Ruth  has just caught a baseball dropped from an airplane on July 22, 1926 at Mitchel Field (an early New York airport) in Garden City, Long Island.  The New York Times reports Ruth donned an army uniform to drum up publicity for the Citizens Military Training Camps.

Six times, baseballs were dropped from the airplane and Ruth was sweating up a storm, Continue reading