It’s a rite of passage for college girls across the country – a day spent at the beach with girlfriends. In this case, the girls were from Pomona College in Pomona, CA. The particular beach is unknown, but the waters of the Pacific look calm, the sand lovely, and the girls of course, progressive in their scanty bathing suits!
13 girls pose for this candid shot, making me wonder who is taking the picture! There must have been 14 people at this outing. The girls’ bathing costumes vary in style from the “old fashioned” on the far right to the risqué on the left, with everything else in between. I’m going to guess (100% guess) that this photo was taken in the mid-1900s to 1910s. Some girls have a more “flapper” style of hair and suit, while others are holding on to older fashions. Therefore, my guess is that this was a transition time between the Edwardian to the Roaring 20s.
Unknown beach location in Southern California.
Frolicking in the waves. Each photo has been individually scanned and follow.
Lounging in the sun
Come in, the water’s fine!
Do you think she fell over or was knocked over by a wave?
Note that some of the girls have on a bathing cap. At the time they weren’t rubber like you picture on a swimmer, but were made of the same or similar fabric to the bathing costume. This was because the whole costume was to have a certain coquettish look. The early bathing costumes were clothing designed to give some freedom of movement, but also to showcase the individual wearer’s style, status and station. A hat or head covering was essential to complete the look.
I’m no historian of bathing suit design, so there ends my understanding of these styles. :-)