Recruiting men

A feature from last December: “The Golden Age of Denial: Pimping the Military” by Christopher Harrity, on recruitment art of the last century. Two themes (of several) in the feature: bare-chested men thrusting phallic symbols; and orgies of gang bathing.

(Hat tip to George V. Reilly on Facebook.)

On theme 1, a J.C. Leyendecker Collier’s cover (one of two such images in my 2011 posting on Leyendecker):


And then Gun Crew Loading a 5″ 38 Caliber Gun and 4″ 50 Caliber Mark XII Gun Crew in Action, Navy recruitment posters by McClelland Barclay:



On Barclay:

McClelland Barclay (1891–1942) was an American painter of pinup art. Born in St. Louis in 1891, Barclay studied first at the Art Institute of Chicago, then later at the Art Students League in New York City, under George Bridgman and Thomas Fogarty. By the time he was 21, Barclay’s work had been published in The Saturday Evening Post, Ladies’ Home Journal, and Cosmopolitan.

… During the 1920s and 1930s, McClelland Barclay’s images were selected for use by art directors for the nation’s most popular periodicals including Collier’s, Country Gentleman, Redbook, Pictorial Review, Coronet, Country Life, The Saturday Evening Post, The Ladies’ Home Journal, Cosmopolitan, and a host of movie magazines. He began painting movie poster art for Hollywood studios during the 1930s as well and was considered a superstar in the film industry. (Wikipedia link)

On theme 2, we start with a series of patriotic (and homoerotic) ads for Cannon towels:




Plus gang bathing with Ivory Soap:


Oh my.

3 Responses to “Recruiting men”

  1. arnold zwicky Says:

    From Emily Rizzo on Facebook:

    But the ads for towels were aimed at women back home presumably missing their menfolk and being relieved to know they were cavorting with other men rather than women.

  2. Robert G Says:

    Love the classics — new posters just aren’t the same. These days they make the studs wear protection in scenes involving insertion. (Back then, real men didn’t need hearing.)

  3. Gang showers | Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] More group bathing in “Recruiting men”. […]

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