Beach Time: Glass Plate Negatives That Show Chicago Beauties in Swimsuits From the 1920s

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Renowned as the greatest visual chronicler of the circus in the American 20th century, American photographer Harry A. Atwell (1879-1957) began his career as a diversified entertainment event photographer using magnesium flash light illumination in Chicago where he headquartered from 1900 to 1952. His fascination with the circus images began early; in later years he claimed to have shot his first image in 1907.

Harry also had a studio in Chicago at 54 W. Randolph. And these glass plate negatives he took at Wilson Beach, Chicago in 1922. Might be the Barnum and Bailey Circus girls, which would explain what is quite daring attire for 1922, when women were expected to wear stockings (rolled) with their swimsuits.

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