129 ways to keep a husband

Although the 1950s left its mark on today’s culture, much has changed since then. The time period gave us icons like Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, and Audrey Hepburn who we recognize today, but it was also a time of opposing communism and the Cold War. Meanwhile, came the baby booms, the suburban booms, and the pilot of I Love Lucy. [1]

Old-fashioned movies and shows may give us a hint of the 50s culture, but there is another element that can be explored: magazines. Or to be more precise, a magazine article from 1958 teaching women how to snag a husband. 

“In the United States today there are sixteen million women over the age of seventeen who are not married,” the article begins. “Presumably the vast majority of them would like to be.”

Over the age of seventeen. Yes, a lot has changed since the 50s. However, that does not mean there can’t be nuggets of gold in this list that might help a girl out in 2019.

The article was created by 16 authors who were instructed by the publisher to brainstorm ways lonely women could get the attention of men. The group included a marriage consultant, a song-writer, an airline stewardess, a police commissioner, a banker, a housewife, a bachelor, and a psychologist. They were told to “throw away their judgements” while writing, which might explain their more questionable suggestions.

The magazine was found by Kim Marx-Kuczynski at a rummage sale and she bought it for a buck. “I think the article is reflective of the social mores of the era, and I found the comparison between what was acceptable then and what is acceptable now fascinating,” she said. “It also made me grateful that so much progress has been made.” [2]

Some of the items sound simple enough and might work today. Others are… well… You’ll read them yourself. Perhaps some of the outlandish suggestions have some ‘man-catching’ magic to them. Or they might land you in jail. Not that we suggest you try them. But if you do, please take videos! Prepare for your eyes to roll. 

129 Ways to Get a Husband

WHERE TO FIND HIM

  1. Get a dog and walk it.
  2. Have your car break down at strategic places.
  3. Attend night school – take courses men like.
  4. Join a hiking club.
  5. Look in the census reports for places with the most single men. Nevada has 125 males for every 100 females.
  6. Read the obituaries to find eligible widowers
  7. Take up golf and go to different golf courses.
  8. Take several short vacations at different places rather than one long one at one place.
  9. Sit on a park bench and feed the pigeons.
  10. Take a bicycle trip through Europe.
  11. Get a job in a medical, dental or law school.
  12. Become a nurse or airline stewardess – they have very high marriage rates.
  13. Ask your friends’ husbands who the eligible men are in their offices.
  14. Be nice to everybody – they may have an eligible brother or son.
  15. Get a government job overseas.
  16. Volunteer for jury duty.
  17. Be friendly to ugly men – handsome is as handsome does.
  18. Tell your friends that you are interested in getting married. Don’t keep it a secret.
  19. Get lost at football games.
  20. Don’t take a job in a company run largely by women.
  21. Get a job demonstrating fishing tackle in a sporting goods store.
  22. On a plane, train or bus don’t sit next to a woman – sit next to a man.
  23. Go to all reunions of your high school or college class. There may be widowers there.
  24. Don’t be afraid to associate with more attractive girls; they may have some leftovers.
  25. Go back to your hometown for a visit – the wild kid next door may have become a very eligible bachelor while you were away.
  26. Don’t room with a girl who is a sad sack and let her pull you down to her level.
  27. Get a part-time job in a convention bureau.
  28. Change apartments from time to time.
  29. When traveling, stay at small hotels where it is easier to meet strangers.
  30. Learn to paint. Set up your easel outside an engineering school.

HOW TO LET HIM KNOW YOU’RE THERE

  1. Stumble when you walk into a room that he’s in.
  2. Forget discretion every once in a while, and call him up.
  3. Carry a hatbox.
  4. Wear a Band-Aid. People always ask what happened.
  5. Make a lot of money.
  6. Learn several funny stories and learn to tell them well – but make sure you don’t tell them to him more than once.
  7. Walk up to him and tell him you need some advice.
  8. Dropping the handkerchief still works.
  9. Have your father buy some theater tickets that have to be got rid of.
  10. Stand in a corner and cry softly. Chances are good that he’ll come over to find out what’s wrong.
  11. Don’t let him fish for your name the next time you meet. None of this “guess who” stuff.
  12. If you’re at a resort, have the bell-boy page you.
  13. Buy a convertible. Men like to ride in them.
  14. Learn how to bake tasty apple pies. Bring one in to the office and let the eligible bachelors taste it.
  15. Laugh at his jokes.
  16. If there’s a wallflower among the men you know, why not cultivate him? For all you know, he may be a diamond in the rough.
  17. “Accidentally” have your purse fly open, scattering its contents all over the street.

HOW TO LOOK GOOD TO HIM

  1. Men like to think they’re the authorities on perfume. Ask his advice on what kind you should wear.
  2. Get better-looking glasses – men still make passes at girls who wear glasses – or try contact lenses.
  3. Practice your drinking with your women friends first.
  4. If you dye your hair, pick a shade and stick to it.
  5. Wear high heels most of the time – they’re sexier!
  6. Unless he happens to be shorter than you are!
  7. Tell him he’s handsome.
  8. Take good care of your health. Men don’t like girls who are ill.
  9. If you look good in sweaters, wear one on every third date.
  10. Dress differently from the other girls in the office.
  11. Get a sunburn.
  12. Watch your vocabulary.
  13. Go on a diet if you need to.
  14. When you are with him, order your steak rare.
  15. Don’t tell him about your allergies.
  16. European women use their eyes to good advantage. Practice in front of a mirror.
  17. Buy a full-length mirror and take a good look before you go to greet him.
  18. Change the shade of your stockings and be sure to keep the seams straight!
  19. Get that fresh-scrubbed look by scrubbing!
  20. If he has bought you any trinket or accessory, wear it.
  21. Use the ashtray; don’t crush out cigarettes in coffee cups!
  22. Polish up on making introductions; learn to do them gracefully.
  23. Don’t be too fussy.
  24. Stick to your moral standards.
  25. Don’t whine – girls who whine stay on the vine!

HOW TO LAND HIM

  1. Show him you can have fun on a cheap date – but don’t overdo it!
  2. Don’t let your parents treat him like a potential husband.
  3. Ask your parents to disappear when you’re entertaining!
  4. Double-date with a gay, happily married couple – let him see what it’s like!
  5. Tell his friends nice things about him.
  6. Send his mother a birthday card.
  7. Ask his mother for her recipes.
  8. Talk to his father about business and agree that taxes are too high!
  9. Buy his sister’s children an occasional present.
  10. On the first date tell him you aren’t thinking of getting married!
  11. Don’t talk about how many children you want.
  12. If he’s a fisherman, learn to scale and clean fish.
  13. Don’t tell him everything about yourself at the start. Hold something in reserve.
  14. When you’re out strolling with him, don’t insist on stopping at every shop window.
  15. Don’t tell him how much your clothes cost.
  16. Learn to sew and wear something you have made yourself.
  17. Don’t gossip about him.
  18. Never let him know he’s the only one, even if you have to stay home one or two nights a week!
  19. Don’t be a pushover when he’s trying to make a date.
  20. Very early in your dating, why not get a favorite song that you both regard as your own?
  21. Find out about the girls he hasn’t married. Don’t repeat the mistakes they made.
  22. Don’t discuss your former boyfriends.
  23. If you are widowed or divorced, don’t constantly discuss your former husband.
  24. Be flexible. If he decides to skip the dance and go rowing on the lake, go – even if you are wearing your best evening gown.
  25. Hide your Phi Beta Kappa key if you own one – later on junior can play with it.
  26. Turn wolves into husband material by assuming they have honor.
  27. Resist the urge to make him over – before marriage, that is!
  28. Learn where to draw the line – but do it gracefully.
  29. Remain innocent but not ignorant.
  30. Make your home comfortable when he calls – large ashtrays, comfortable chairs.
  31. Learn to play poker.
  32. If he’s rich, tell him you like his money – the honesty will intrigue him!
  33. Never let him believe your career is more important to him than marriage.
  34. Buy him an amusing or particularly appropriate present everyone once in a while. But don’t make it too expensive.
  35. Clip and mail him a funny cartoon that means something to both of you.
  36. Don’t tell dirty stories.
  37. Stop being a mama’s girl – don’t let him think he’ll have in-law trouble, even if you know he will!
  38. Point out to him that the death rate of single men is twice that of married men.

WILD IDEAS – ANYTHING GOES

  1. Go to Yale.
  2. Get a hunting license.
  3. If your mother is fat, tell him you take after your father. If he’s fat too, tell him you’re adopted!
  4. Stow away on a battleship.
  5. Rent a billboard and post your picture and telephone number on it.
  6. Paint your name and number on your roof and say, “Give me a buzz, pilots.”
  7. Start a whispering campaign on how sought-after you are.
  8. Sink at a fashionable beach at high noon!
  9. Ride the airport bus back and forth from the airport.
  10. Bribe Ferris-wheel operator to get you stuck on the top of a Ferris wheel.
  11. Stand on a busy street corner with a lasso.
  12. Carry a camera and ask strange, handsome men if they would mind snapping your picture.
  13. Ask your mother to take in male borders.
  14. Make and sell toupees – bald men are easy catches!
  15. Advertise for male co-owner of a boat.
  16. If you see a man with a flat, offer to fix it.
  17. Carry a tow chain in the trunk of your automobile.
  18. Let it be known in your office that you have a button box and will sew on bachelors’ loose buttons.
  19. Don’t marry him if he has too many loose buttons! [3]
  1. History.com editors. The 1950s. https://www.history.com/topics/cold-war/1950s June 17, 2010
  2. Bella DePaulo, Ph.D. 129 Ways to Get a Husband, According to a 1958 Magazine Article https://blogs.psychcentral.com/single-at-heart/2018/11/129-ways-to-get-a-husband-according-to-a-1958-magazine-article/ November 15, 2018
  3. This ‘129 Ways to Get a Husband’ Article From 1958 Shows How Much The World Has Changed https://moon-child.net/this-129-ways-to-get-a-husband-article-from-1958-shows-how-much-the-world-has-changed-1/ December 31, 2018

The post 129 Ways to Get a Husband in the 50s appeared first on The Hearty Soul.



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