Posts Tagged ‘Baumgarth Calendar Co’

May Flowers — Joanne Arnold, Miss May 1954

May 11, 2011

The lovely and talented Joanne Arnold, Miss May 1954, first appeared in Playboy’s March 1954 pictorial “Sex Sells a Shirt.”

Click to enlarge the shots and read the story, it’s actually a really interesting little piece with a kicky, fun insight in to 1950’s advertising. Far more risque than you might expect. The PR folks for Hartog were some skilled and creative dudes.

However. Please do not tell me to watch Mad Men.

I know it’s, like, all cool and retro and sexist and clever, but I just don’t feel like getting in to it. Yet I keep getting told to. Everyone wants me to watch it. I can’t swing my arms without hitting someone who’s saying, “E, you have to watch Mad Men. You’ll love it. Also, stop hitting me with your swinging arms.” I say, Never! to both!

Ms. Arnold was a hit with readers as the Hartog “keep your shirt on” girl, but Playboy did not pick her as Miss May because of that (they did feature her the following August, which we’ll get to). There was no such linear relation between her appearance in March and her gatefold in May. Two totally separate things, as it ends up.


Purchased from the Baumgarth Calendar Co.

The kind of wonky centerfold shot is, like the centerfolds from most of ’53-54, a purchased photograph. And, like Marilyn Monroe’s and several other of the first “sweetheart/playmate” gatefolds, the photograph was purchased from the Baumgarth Calendar Company.


The one on the right is hands-down my favorite.

I was sick of having no photographer credits on all the Baumgarth shots, and I wanted to know more about the John Baumgarth Calendar Co. so I took the light rail down to Googlytown.

I was hoping to find out specific names of photographers other than Tom Kelley, who did Marilyn’s picture, but when I googled “Baumgarth Calendar Company,” my own goddamned site was the second link. Also the fifth. I’m not the mayor of Playmate Googlytown — but apparently I’m something like an alderman. Frustrating.

Here’s what I know. The “company” was run out of Melrose Park, Illinois, a suburb on the west side of Chicago. However, not only can I find zero way to get in touch with the now-defunct company’s former employees, it turns out that besides the rare occasion of hiring a dude and arranging their own photoshoots, they also, like Hef in the first six months of Playboy, mainly purchased photos from private photographers.

The thing is, the centerfold picture could have been shot by anyone and the credit kind of doesn’t matter anyway. In May of 1954, the Playmates did not have names listed or anything like that.

Keep in mind, this was only the sixth issue of Playboy to even hit newsstands, and the magazine was still finding its feet.

Like a new struck foal stumbling around in the brave new world into which it has been thrust: Aww. The adorable, stumbly, delicate colt that we call “skin rag.”

Anyway. This particular month’s centerfold was, like, an isolated, anonymous picture. It’s possible no one at Playboy was even aware the model from the Hartog feature and cover had been the purchased photo of Miss May until a few months after the fact. They did know by the following August because they mention it in her second official appearance in the magazine, which I’m about to explain.

The rest of these gorgeous shots, however, come from a spread shot by superfly BAMF Peter Gowland entitled “Gowland’s Cool Pool.” The piece appeared in the August 1955 issue of Playboy, by which time the practice of credits had entered play and Ms. Arnold was cited as the model.


Scan of the article which accompanied the spread.

She also appeared as the cover model/mermaid for the same issue, a shot taken by Gowland and painted on and embellished for a little under the sea come-hither adventure.

This scan is of the newsstand edition; in the subscribers’ mailed edition, her nipples are not painted over, I have heard.

But SPEAKING of her nipples —

Ms. Arnold has a third nipple on the underside of her left breast. When I first read that I made a loud, “Pfft” noise of disbelief, and, browsing through my pictures, thought, “No way. I never noticed that and she’s all moley to boot: this is probably folklore based on a regular beauty mark.”

But then …


Click to enlarge it … it’s clearly nipplish and not a mole. I was surprised.

Lo and behold and hell and goddamn — seems she does, indeed, have a supernumerary nipple.

All right, all right — I’ll king you. Sheesh.

No idea where that shot came from, Ms. Arnold was a very successful and busy men’s magazine model in her lovely heyday. I just wanted another splash of color … and to make the tacky “king me” joke.

What is she going to do when big hats go out?

I stole that joke from Gypsy. My funny is just not operating at full capacity today. (Hangs head, Charlie Brown music.)

I guess the theme of the photograph is that, like, men are toys to her? Is that the idea? Or is she a big, scary giant about to eat them?? I could go either way. Giant’s more exciting but I’m pretty sure the former is more accurate.

By the way, that’s called vore porn. Jonohs linked me to some a while back. Ridiculous. Normally I am the last one to judge a kink for obvious reasons, but when I saw CG animation of giant women totally eating dudes, I said, “No. Ridiculous. You are being ridiculous.”

I say again: if you get off on fantasies of enormous women crushing you and grinding your bones between their gigantic teeth and then digesting you slowly in their acidy stomachs, you are ridiculous.

I’m sorry, but I needed you to know how I feel. And please don’t link to vore in the comments. I won’t go. I neither wear clown shoes nor dwell in Florida. Keep that nasty shit in your favorites folder.

As her career progressed, Ms. Arnold starred in a string of cheesey B-movie popcorn flicks. This is my favorite poster.


via.

“Don’t get frank with me, young lady.” So much sassy molassy! I hate it when young people are frank! … I just think frank was a bit of a mild word to use on a poster with so many exclamation points.

Questions for discussion:

  • Do supernumerary nipples have sensation? Please get back to me quickly.
  • Is vore porn ridiculous? Be specific.
  • If you had a girl gang, what would you call it?

  • Valentine Vixens: Inaugural edition featuring Margaret Scott

    February 1, 2010

    Today, instead of crawling back in to bed, I am forcing myself to find a new project that will hopefully start me writing every day again. You know me and the playmates: spoonfuls of sugar help the medicine go down! With that idea, twenty-nine rays of sunshine to light up your lonelyhearted February are headed your way: a Valentine Vixen a day. Beginning right … now.


    Photographed by Baumgarth Calendar Co and purchased by Hef in 1953.

    Another of Hefner’s fortunate discoveries from the well-filled files of the John Baumgarth Calendar Company in Melrose Park, Illinois was pretty-in-pink Miss February, Margaret Scott. Miss Scott’s shapely figure and ultrafeminine dressing-room set apparently made her an instant hit with the readers who purchased the third issue of Hef’s infant magazine: she became an extremely popular Playmate, drawing stacks of letters from the legions of her enthusiastic supporters. There’s even a chance that Margaret posed again under another name. See Miss April 1954. (The Playmate Book, 1996)

    In April 1954, Margaret appeared as the “gatefold” model under the name Marilyn Waltz, again in a picture purchased by Hef from Baumgarth Calendar Company (rest assured, I am chasing that lead down to see more pictures or my name is not Cheesecake McVintagepants).


    Photographed by Baumgarth Calendar Co.

    For her first official Playboy shoot, the lovely and talented Wisconsin-born model posed again as Marilyn Waltz the following April, in 1955, as the Playmate of the Month. Why, look at that, I already have that one saved due to the fact that I was planning a thingy on vintage centerfolds in tacky capri pants — there are laughably plenty.


    Photographed by Hal Adams.

    Thanks to her caginess and Hugh Hefner using nudie calendar photography during the fledgling years of the magazine Marilyn/Margaret can lay claim to being one of only two women who are three-time Playmates, giving them the most appearances as centerfolds of any women to ever be featured in the magazine. (The other is Janet Pilgrim, Miss July and December 1955, and Miss October 1956.) But Marilyn did not reveal her multiple appearances for over forty years.

    After Hef broadly speculated as to the similarities between Marilyn Waltz and Margaret Scott in 1996’s The Playmate Book, Marilyn contacted Playboy and confirmed that both models were her: she had posed for Baumgarth Calendar Co. as Margaret Scott when she was younger, but had posed under her real name subsequently.

    Waltz received more fan mail — ironically, for her Margaret Scott appearance — than any other Playmate in 1954. Her February 1954 Margaret Scott centerfold appearance is seen as a classic. (the wiki)

    Marilyn Arduth Waltz Jordan died December 23, 2006, in Medford, Oregon. She was 76.