American Mail Order Catalogs with Boys Clothings: Underwear (1938)

Figure 1.--

We note quite a variety of underwear offered in 1938. We see some of the older styled underwear as well as many modern looking items. This is one area that the photographic record offers few clues, but the big mail order companies provide very detailed information. We note long underwear offered by Sears. Long underwear was still widely worn durung the Winter, especially in northern states.

Sears Union Suits

Sears had long underwear in its Fall-Winter (1938-39 catalog Sears Fall and Winter catalog for 1938-39, p. 282. There were several different styles. We note different styles of heavy-weight cotton union suits for boys. Sears stresses that ribbed knits were especially warm. The Sears presentation of these suits made a strong appeal to athletics. The advertisement obviously seeks to make the point that these union suits are worn by boys who play sports and are very masculine in their cultural orientation.


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Created: 3:25 PM 1/9/2009
Last updated: 3:25 PM 1/9/2009