WHY WAS THIS STAINED GLASS ART
PAINTED OVER AND HIDDEN FOR 52 YEARS?
Look close . . . what was so objectionable
about this commissioned stained glass piece
that it was immediately painted over
when displayed at the grand opening
of the Fox Theater in 1929?
(HINT: Nice girls don't smoke.)
The fact that the lady was holding a cigarette
was so abhorrent and immoral at the time,
the Fox was pressured into covering this
ladies room decoration with a thick coat of paint.
Not until the theater was saved and restored,
some 52 years later in 1981, was the original
stained glass piece discovered and carefully unmasked
to its original and magnificent state.
(It is now illuminated and part of the formal
"ladies lounge" on the mezzanine level.)
In 1921, a bill was proposed in U.S. Congress to
ban women from smoking in public.
(It was narrowly defeated.)
In 1928, the American Tobacco Company hired Edward Bernays
(known today as the "father of public relations")
to make smoking acceptable for women.
In 1929, Bernays hired women to smoke their
"torches of freedom" as they walked in the
Easter Sunday Parade in New York City.
We've come a long way, baby!