These photos of
Gypsy Rose Lee was taken in 1949 at the Cotton
Festival. The carnival in the back ground is the
Royal American. Gypsy struts her stuff on the show
bally platform at the far end of the midway along
with the other burlesque performers. Gypsy received
a salary of five thousand a week. The only other
burlesque dancer that was paid this amount was Sally
Rand. Among Gypsy’s personal friends were Sonny Nite,
Casino Vickie and Ward Hall, just to name a few.
Gypsy Rose Lee got her start on a carnival bally
platform along with many other famous burlesque
dances. There were other venues where one could be
entertained by these seductive damsels like the
Frisco Follies in New Orleans and the Lido Tampa
Florida. A little known fact is that Ward Hall
performed at the Frisco Follies in 1950. There were
burlesque clubs in just about every major city
during the 20′s, 30′s, 40′s and even up to the
1950′s. The midway girl shows and Burlesque night
clubs are all but gone…..however these shows can
still be seen on any Sea shore beach…… and they are
A little stroll
down the midway between shows.
Some ice cream and
a cigarette. In those days cigarettes were quite
fashionable. Sorry to say she did die of lung
Ivan M. Henry
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