Category: 1940’s Trends

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Goldfish Swallowing (1940’s)

It began in the 1930’s, a fad so bizarre; some mistakenly believe it to be an urban legend. Goldfish swallowing, where a live goldfish is swallowed, started in the mid 1939 and sizzled out a few months later. Few fads can be traced back to one person but the origination of goldfish swallowing is well documented. It began with a single man.

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The Jitterbug Dance (1940’s)

Popular in the 1940’s, the Jitterbug dance originated two decades earlier in African American dance clubs in and around Harlem, New York. Unflatteringly, the Jitterbug dance term came to be associated with swing dancers who danced without any control or knowledge of proper dance moves, such uncontrolled dance movements because typically the dancers were drunk. In fact, the term jitterbug comes from an early 20th-centry slang term used to describe alcoholics who suffered from the “jitters”.

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Slinky Toy (1940’s)

The Slinky or “Lazy Spring” toy has mesmerized children since the mid 1940’s. The helical spring toy stretches and then reforms itself using gravity and its own momentum. In its first sixty years, the Slinky company, lead by Betty James of Philadelphia, sold over 300 million units making the Slinky one of the most successful and highest selling toys of all time.