F is for Frank Sinatra Columbus Day Riot 1944

April 6, 2015

For the A to Z blogging challenge I’ve decided to blog about the 1940′s. And in the spirit of the 1940′s, at the end of the month, I’ll be giving away an ebook copy of one of my favorite books, Summer at Tiffany, to one of my newsletter subscribers (sign-up on the sidebar if you are so inclined.) It’s a light-hearted memoir of two college girls let loose in New York City for a summer. What a hoot.

FOh, the bobbysoxers! Before One Direction, before the Beetles, before Elvis, there was Frank Sinatra, Mr. Blue Eyes himself.

His fans were coined bobbysoxers because they wore rolled down socks with their saddle shoes and oxfords. On October 12, 1944 at a New York performance at the Paramount Theater, a riot broke out as hundreds of girls started lining up at midnight for the next day’s show. In all, about 30,000 teen girls descended on Times Square.

From the Guardian:
The New Republic editor Bruce Bliven called it “a phenomenon of mass hysteria that is only seen two or three times in a century. You need to go back not merely to Lindbergh [Charles Lindbergh’s first flight] and Valentino to understand it, but to the dance madness that overtook some German villages in the middle ages, or to the Children’s Crusade.” What was new was the power that one singer held, heralded by mass screaming, and the advent of the teenager as a social ideal. Sinatra was the first modern pop star.

12 responses to F is for Frank Sinatra Columbus Day Riot 1944

  1. I’ve never understand the concept of fandemonium. Frank was good, but really those girls used to go to some extremes.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

  2. I didn’t realize you are AZ based! (Read the sidebar, Nancy!) Me too. I am in Tucson. I run a women’s blogging group there. My step daughter is a children’s editor and author in Brooklyn. I will be back!

  3. WOw, that’s dedication! Better Sinatra than Twilight I say.

    Good luck with the 2015 A to Z Challenge!
    A to Z Co-Host S. L. Hennessy
    http://pensuasion.blogspot.com

  4. Cool post! And definitely a cool theme! Think I’ll go check out the previous ones as well 🙂

    Keep A to Z’ing!!!!

  5. Ahh, old blue eyes. Always a favorite!

  6. Frank Sinatra is one of my favorites!!! This year I wrote an essay about him for my composition class and an informative speech about him for speech class. He sure was a character that ole blue eyes! Love your posts and theme!

    • Hi, Shannon! How interesting that you picked him for your school projects. I never knew about his fandom until I started digging in to the 1940’s. Fascinating stuff.