Before Vince McMahon, Wrestle mania, and the conglomeration of American Wrestling, the wrestling scene was very different. A little while back looking into the circus/carnival and backroom brawling roots of wrestling, I had a hard time finding much in the way of books on the development of wrestling culture in the U.S. I figured a good way to investigate some of the early history of wrestling would be to track down some vintage publications and scan them. I’ve always loved to hear older generations talk about the wrestlers from their youth and feel that wrestling is and always has been a unique arena for examining trends in culture. While often dismissed as a low type of theater, there is a type of dialogue in wrestling regarding race, class, effeminacy, regionalism, etc. that I find refreshing in its honesty. And while wrestling is now geared toward the Maxim crowd of the teen through thirties male, there was a time in the past when wrestling appealed to broader parts of society. In the 50s, even your granny had that wrestler she loved to hate.
I’ve gotten a mixed reaction on my scans of these vintage wrestling magazines. Some scanners wonder why I’d bother with such material, but others have simply loved the glance back at the golden age of wrestling and related personal encounters with favorite wrestlers and other fun bits of memory. For my part, I love to work with them and understand that every scan does not excite the interest of every reader.
Tonight’s scan is a little more recent than my previous wrestling scans, an issue of Wrestling World from January 1961.
Some info on the make up this tag team, which was actually a handful of persons can be found Here.
Laughed at for their backward ways, but these boys seem to take it a little bit more easy than everyone else. Life is good when you’re a hillbilly…
I cannot tell a lie, my favorite thing about wrestling is the girls. In this issue, Millie Stafford, and they say
But I’m not the only one who likes wrestlers, Jayne Mansfield herself had a thing for the opposite sex in tights. Here she is with cover man Dick the Bruiser. This page comes from the 8 pages in the center of the magazine on a whiter, slicker stock for the 4 color photos.
You can read the rest of the magazine by downloading the scan Here.
Enjoy. I've got some other post material on the symbiosis of the spread of TV and the popularity of wrestling after the war to go with a couple of scans, so stay tuned mat fans, I will get them up here sooner or later...