Saturday, February 2, 2013

Water Carnival -- 1948

Photos by John Holly Williams -- LLF Library

I like these photos as much for the glimpses of the old city pool as the bathing beauties and their swimsuits, shoes and hairstyles from July 1948.  This series of photos is not the best work I have seen by Mr. Williams.  There are exposure, framing and what appears to be dark room issues, and even a few shots in which the top of the little girl's head is cut off.  I suspect he forgot his step ladder that day, or perhaps he was simply distracted by all the pretty girls. He wasn't the only one -- note the young man sneaking a peek in the first photograph.  

There are no names accompanying these photos, so if anyone out there recognizes any of these three lasses, please leave a comment here or on my Facebook page.

UPDATE: From a Facebook Friend: For the record, the Lions Club Beauty Pageant is still going strong and well attended in Brookhaven.  When the City Pool was removed, the name was changed to the Beauty Pageant and it was moved to the BHS Auditorium.  Now they hold it every year, about a week or two before school starts, at the Lincoln County Civic Center.  There are grandmothers who were in it in their day and their granddaughters enter now.  Still a big deal for residents of the county.

My reply: There's just something about a night canopy over a shimmering aqua pool, lights dancing underwater, the smell of chlorine, the summer air, a small orchestra playing live tunes, and the sound of high heels clicking on the concrete and plywood runways.


  1. I am thrilled to see the metal bars of the City Pool diving board again....jumping and diving off that high dive is a very strong memory for me. So is the memory of the Water Carnival as you described it! I also remember vividly that there was a synchronized swimming group for entertainment some years.

  2. I don't remember the synchronized swimming group! How cool!

    1. You are so much younger than I! This group was probably only there the first years I attended. I am wondering if you (like I) learned to swim in the very chilly City Pool under the watchful eye of Coach Therrell. I was told a few years ago that the pool was fed by an underground spring.