Archive for WW 2 Pin Up Girls

The World Book Dictionary defines pinup as: “Noun 1. A picture of a very attractive or famous person, pinned up on a wall, as in a barracks, usually by admirers who have not met the subject. 2. A very attractive girl, especially one considered attractive enough to be the subject of such a picture.”


K. T. Stevens: Yank Pin Up Girl

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Yank Pin Up K T Stevens

K.T. StevensK. T. Stevens was born Gloria Wood on July 20, 1919 in Los Angeles, California. She certainly had the requisite genes for an acting career as her father was the legendary director Sam Wood and her mother a stage performer. K.T. Stevens wasted no time either. By the time she was 2 years old, she had made her film debut in her father’s silent classic Peck’s “Bad Boy” (1921), which starred Jackie Coogan.

Christened Gloria Wood, she was billed “Baby Gloria Wood” as a toddler. Following high school she decided to pursue acting full time, taking drama lessons and apprenticing in summer stock. In 1938 she toured in two productions: “You Can’t Take It with You” and “My Sister Eileen.” The following year she made her Broadway debut in a walk-on role in “Summer Light” which was directed by Lee Strasberg. At this point she was calling herself “Katharine Stevens” (after her favorite actress, Katharine Hepburn), as she did not want to ride on her famous father’s coattails. Eventually, she settled on the initials “K.T.” which she felt added mystery and flair.

Although her film career subsided, she flourished on radio (“Junior Miss”) and on the Broadway stage where “The Man Who Came to Dinner” (1940), “Yankee Point” (1942) and “Nine Girls” 1943) helped boost her reputation. K.T. met actor Hugh Marlowe after they appeared together on Broadway in “The Land Is Bright” (1941). Co-starring in a 1944 Chicago production of “The Voice of the Turtle,” they married in 1946. The couple went on to grace more than 20 stage shows together, including a Broadway production of the classic film “Laura” in which she played the mysterious title role and he the obsessed detective. In the 1950s K.T. moved to TV episodics with “Perry Mason,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” and “The Big Valley” just a few of her guest appearances. She possessed an open-faced prettiness and seemed ideal for film noir, but her chance to break through never materialized despite decent roles in “Kitty Foyle: The Natural History of a Woman” (1940), which was directed by her father, “The Great Man’s Lady” (1942) starring Barbara Stanwyck, “Port of New York” (1949) with Yul Brynner, “Vice Squad” (1953) featuring Paulette Goddard and the sci-fi film “Missile to the Moon” (1958).

Following her 1967 divorce from Marlowe, K.T. abandoned acting for a time in favor of teaching nursery school. She eventually returned to TV and made some strides in daytime soaps, most notably “The Young and the Restless” (1973). She also served three terms as President of the L.A. local branch of AFTRA. K.T. had two sons, Jeffrey, born in 1948 and Christian, born in 1951, the latter best known these days as sportscaster Chris Marlowe.

She died of lung cancer on June 13, 1994.

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Yank Pin Up Francis Rafferty

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Yank Pin Up Frances Rafferty


Francis RaffertyFrancis was born in Sioux City, Iowa, on June 16, 1922. As the Depression took its hold on America, her family moved to Los Angeles when she was 9 in search of work. Rafferty had a gift for dance, and won a scholarship to the Edith Jane Dancing School the next year. She attended UCLA following her high school graduation but soon dropped out after earning an understudy position for dancer Vera Zorina in the film “I Was an Adventuress” (1940).

Rafferty soon changed her focus to acting after breaking a kneecap from a fall during a performance at the Hollywood Bowl on the concrete stage. Months of recovery awaited.

Frances RaffertyThe execs at MGM signed Rafferty at the age of 19 and her Hollywood career began with a bit part in “The War Against Mrs. Hadley” (1942). She got a dancing role in “Presenting Lily Mars” (1943) starring Judy Garland. She also turned heads with her small role in the Rooney and Garland musical, “Girl Crazy” (1943). So, MGM was good to her, giving her other parts in the Wallace Beery vehicle, “Barbary Coast Gent” (1944) and “Mrs. Parkington” (1944), starring Tay Garnett, Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon. Rafferty became known for her exotic beauty and she capitalized on it in “Dragon Seed” (1944), playing the unfortunate Oriental girl who is raped and murdered. Rafferty became a famous war-era cover girl for YANK, the Army Weekly but as hard as she tried, she was unable to attain major starring roles in “A” pictures. She continued in Hollywood, remaining a “B” level co-star, best remembered as the pouty glamor girl. She received star billing in “Abbott and Costello in Hollywood” (1945), one of the first full-length features starring the two comedians and was convincing in the entertaining mystery, “The Hidden Eye” (1945).

Frances Rafferty Pin UpAfter World War II, Rafferty acted in only a handful of films like 1947’s comedy, “Lost Honeymoon, Curley” (1947), as a tormented teacher of the Little Rascals and 1948’s “An Old-Fashioned Girl” (1948). Sadly, Rafferty’s career had become less significant as the 1940’s came to a close. In 1948 she married Thomas R. Baker, an Air Force colonel who later became general manager for the Los Alamitos Racetrack, and had two children.

Frances Rafferty died in her sleep at her home of natural causes on April 18, 2004 in Paso Robles, California.

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Gale Robbins Yank Pin Up April 21, 1944

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Gale Robbins - Yank Pin Up April 21, 1944


Actress Gale RobbinsLittle known singer/actress Gale Robbins was a knockout-looking hazel-eyed redhead who made a slight dent in post-war Hollywood. Born Betty Gale Robbins in Chicago, Illinois (some say Mitchell, Indiana) on May 7, 1921, she was the daughter of Arthur E. and Blanche Robbins, and educated at Chicago’s Jennings Seminary at Aurora, Illinois and Flower Tech. Gale had a natural flair for music and appeared in glee clubs and church choirs in the early days. She graduated from her Chicago high school in 1939.

Gale Robbins and Bob  HopeShe started out in entertainment as a model for the Vera Jones Modeling School in Chicago, but her singing talents soon took over. Signed by a talent agency, she sang with Phil Levant’s outfit in 1940 and later teamed with some male singers for a swing band that called themselves “The Duchess and Her Dukes.” She went on to work with some of the top radio and live ‘big bands’ of that era including the Ben Bernie, Jan Garber and Hal Kemp orchestras.

Gorgeous Gale Robbins

20th Century-Fox caught sight of this slim looker and quickly signed her up, her first film being the pleasant time-filler “In the Meantime, Darling” (1944). A semi-popular cheesecake pin-up, Gale appeared on the cover of “Yank, The Army Weekly” in 1944 and toured with Bob Hope in Europe the next year. Her post-war parts, mostly sultry second leads, were typically lightweight in nature. She was often lent out to other studios and not always in a singing mode. Gale’s better known film work includes “Race Street” (1948), “The Barkleys of Broadway” (1949), “Three Little Words” (1950), “The Fuller Brush Girl” (1950) and “Calamity Jane” (1953).


Sultry Gale RobbinsGale went on to host the “Hollywood House” (1949) and also appeared on “The Colgate Comedy Hour” (1950) in 1951. In the late 50s the gal with the smooth and sexy vocal style released an easy-listening album (“I’m a Dreamer”) for the Vik Label backed by Eddie Cano & His Orchestra. She covered such standards as “Them There Eyes” and “What Is This Thing Called Love.” After her final film appearance in “Quantrill’s Raiders” (1958) and a few additional TV parts, Gale phased out her career to focus full-time on raising her family.

Married to her high school sweetheart Robert Olson in December of 1943 while he was serving in the Air Force, her husband turned to construction engineering as a career and they had two children. After he was tragically killed in a 1968 building accident, Gale, left with two daughters to raise, decided to make a comeback of sorts. Besides appearing in nightclubs, she was glimpsed in the film “Stand Up and Be Counted” (1972) and appeared on stage in Stephen Sondheim’s musical “Company” in 1975.

Gale Robbins died of lung cancer on February 18, 1980 (aged 58) in Los Angeles, California.

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Lauren Bacall WWII Yank Pin Up

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Lauren Bacall Yank Magazine Pin Up

Lauren Bacall Glamour Gal Lauren Bacall was born Betty Joan Perske on September 16, 1924, in New York City. Her parents were middle-class, with her father working as a salesman and her mother as a secretary. They divorced when she was five. When she was a school girl, Lauren originally wanted to be a dancer, but later, she became enthralled with acting, so she switched gears to head into that field. She had studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York after high school, which enabled her to get her feet wet in some off-Broadway productions.

Sultry Lauren BacallOnce out of school, Lauren entered modeling and, because of her beauty, appeared on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar, one of the most popular magazines in the US. The wife of famed director Howard Hawks spotted the picture in the publication and arranged with her husband to have Lauren take a screen test. As a result, which was entirely positive, she was given the part of Marie Browning in “To Have and Have Not” (1944), a thriller opposite the great Humphrey Bogart, when she was just 19 years old. This not only set the tone for a fabulous career but also one of Hollywood’s greatest love stories (she married Bogart in 1945). It was also the first of several Bogie-Bacall films.

After 1945’s “Confidential Agent” (1945), Lauren received second billing in “The Big Sleep” (1946) with Bogart. The mystery, in the role of Vivian Sternwood Rutledge, was a resounding success. Although she was making one film a year, each production would be eagerly awaited by the public. In 1947, again with her husband, Lauren starred in the thriller “Dark Passage” (1947). The film kept movie patrons on the edge of their seats. The following year, she starred with Bogart, Edward G. Robinson, and Lionel Barrymore in “Key Largo” (1948). The crime drama was even more of a nail biter than her previous film. In 1950, Lauren starred in “Bright Leaf” (1950), a drama set in 1894. It was a film of note because she appeared without her husband – her co-star was Gary Cooper. In 1953, Lauren appeared in her first comedy as Schatze Page in “How to Marry a Millionaire” (1953). The film, with co-stars Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable, was a smash hit all across the theaters of America.

Sultry Glamorous Lauren BacallAfter filming “Designing Woman” (1957), which was released in 1957, Humphrey Bogart died on January 14 from throat cancer. Devastated at being a widow, Lauren returned to the silver screen with “The Gift of Love” (1958) in 1958 opposite Robert Stack. The production turned out to be a big disappointment. Undaunted, Lauren moved back to New York City and appeared in several Broadway plays to huge critical acclaim. She was enjoying acting before live audiences and the audiences in turn enjoyed her fine performances.

Lauren was away from the big screen for five years, but she returned in 1964 to appear in “Shock Treatment” (1964) and “Sex and the Single Girl” (1964). The latter film was a comedy starring Henry Fonda and Tony Curtis. In 1966, Lauren starred in “Harper” (1966) with Paul Newman and Julie Harris, which was one of former’s signature films. Alternating her time between films and the stage, Lauren returned in 1974’s “Murder on the Orient Express” (1974). The film, based on Agatha Christie’s best-selling book was a huge hit. It also garnered Ingrid Bergman her third Oscar. Actually, the huge star-studded cast helped to ensure its success. Two years later, in 1976, Lauren co-starred with John Wayne in “The Shootist” (1976). The film was Wayne’s last – he died from cancer in 1979.

Lauren BacallIn 1981, Lauren played an actress being stalked by a crazed admirer in “The Fan” (1981). The thriller was absolutely fascinating with Lauren in the lead role. After that production, Lauren was away from films again, this time for seven years. In the interim, she again appeared on the stages of Broadway. When she returned, it was for the filming of 1988’s “Mr. North” (1988). After “Misery”  in 1990, and several made for television films, Lauren appeared in 1996’s “My Fellow Americans” (1996). It was a wonderful comedy romp with Jack Lemmon and James Garner as two ex-presidents and their escapades.

Despite her advanced age and deteriorating health, she made a small-scale comeback in the English-language dub of Hayao Miyazaki’s “Howl’s Moving Castle” (2004) (“Howl’s Moving Castle,” based on the young-adult novel by Diana Wynne Jones) as the Witch of the Waste, but future endeavors for the beloved actress are increasingly rare.

Measurements: 34-26-34 (her 1940 modeling card)

Height: 5′ 8½” (1.74 m)

Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history (#6). [1995]

Ranked #20 in the AFI’s top 25 Actress Legends.

Ranked #11 in Empire (UK) magazine’s “The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time” list. [October 1997]

Mother of actor Sam Robards, Stephen Bogart and Leslie Bogart.

Chosen by “People” magazine as one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the World. [1997]

Bacall was staying in the same New York apartment building (The Dakota) as Beatle John Lennon when he was shot and later died on 8th December 1980. When interviewed on the subject in a recent UK TV program hosted by former model Twiggy, Bacall said she had heard the gunshot but assumed that it was a car tire bursting or a vehicle backfiring.

Shortly after Humphrey Bogart’s death, she announced her engagement to Frank Sinatra to the press. Sinatra promptly backed out.

Her screen personna was totally based and modeled after Howard Hawks’s wife, Slim. She even uses her name in To Have and Have Not (1944).

She and former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres (as of 2007, the President of Israel) are cousins. Both have the same original last name — Perske.

Those close to her call her by her real first name, “Betty”.

Still undiscovered, Bacall volunteered as a hostess at the New York chapter of the Stage Door Canteen, working Monday nights when theaters were closed.

With late husband Humphrey Bogart, has a kind of vocal disorder named after her. “Bogart-Bacall syndrome”‘ (or BBS) is a form of muscle tension dysphonia most common in professional voice users (actors, singers, TV/radio presenters, etc) who habitually use a very low speaking pitch. BBS is more common among women than men and has been blamed on “social pressure on professional women to compete with men in the business arena”.

As of 2009 she is the only surviving legend mentioned in a popular phrase from Madonna’s 1990 #1 hit song “Vogue”. Other legends mentioned: Marilyn Monroe, James Dean, Grace Kelly, Jean Harlow, Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth and Bette Davis, who all died before the release of the song. Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Joe DiMaggio, Marlon Brando, Gene Kelly, Ginger Rogers, Katharine Hepburn and Lana Turner all died in following years.

Is mentioned along with late husband Humphrey Bogart in the 1980s song “Key Largo” (“We had it all, just like Bogie and Bacall”).

At the funeral for her husband, Humphrey Bogart, she put a whistle in his coffin. It was a reference to the famous line she says to him in their first film together To Have and Have Not (1944): “You know how to whistle, don’t you? You just put your lips together and blow.”.

Campaigned for Harry S. Truman in the 1948 presidential election.

Quit smoking cigarettes in the mid-1980s.

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Candy Jones Yank PinUP

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Yank Pin Up Candy Jones

Candy Jones Pin Up BlondCandy Jones, originally known as Jessica Arline Wilcox, was born on December 31, 1925 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. She was raised and educated in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Candy Jones was born to a well-off family. Jones reported vivid, conscious memories of physical abuse by her parents, and that she had vague memories of sexual abuse in her youth. She was shuttled between relatives, and her mother, Jones insisted, often kept her cloistered or locked in dark rooms. As a child, Jones said she had an imaginary friend named Arlene to help through her lonely episodes.

She grew into an attractive, statuesque young woman who was very tall, about 6 ft 4 in. Changing her name, she pursued a career as a fashion model. She was a quick success, becoming a runner up for Miss New Jersey in the Miss America contest. Jones was able to parlay this into a hostess job at the main Miss America contest, and a successful career. She was one of the leading pin-up girls of the World War II era: in one month in 1943, she appeared on 11 different magazine covers.

Mind Control of Candy JonesDuring a lengthy United Service Organizations (USO) tour in the Philippines, Jones fell ill in 1945, and was treated by a doctor who was still alive when Candy publicized her mind-control claims; Donald Bain gave this doctor the pseudonym “Gilbert Jensen”. According to researcher Martin Cannon, who interviewed Jones before she died in 1990, the “Marshall Burger” pseudonym in Bain’s book who worked with Jensen on the Jones case was actually Dr. William Kroger.

Jones opened a modeling school, and she also began appearing regularly on NBC’s weekend radio news program Monitor.

In the 1940s and 1950s she was a leading model and pin-up girl, and afterwards established a modeling school and wrote several books on modeling and fashion.

Candy Jones Yank Pin UpIn 1946, Jones married fashion czar Harry Conover, one of the first model agents. They had three sons, and Jones says she didn’t realize Conover was bisexual until some years into their marriage. She recognized some people might consider this naive, but Jones insisted her abusive childhood had made her wary of intimate relationships, and though she had many suitors, she was rather sexually inexperienced when she married. She reported that Conover initiated sexual activities with her very few times, and only when he was intoxicated.

Without notice, Conover disappeared in late 1958. Jones notified police, and Conover’s absence made the news. When he returned after a long binge, Jones sued for divorce in 1959. After the divorce, she was left with $36, and considerable debts.

Controversially, Jones claimed to be a victim of the CIA mind-control program, Project MKULTRA, in the 1960s.

On December 31, 1972, Jones married radio host Long John Nebel after a one-month courtship; they had briefly met decades earlier when Nebel was a photographer. Jones was soon the regular co-host of Nebel’s popular overnight radio talk show, which usually discussed various paranormal topics.

Shortly after their marriage, Nebel said, he noted that Jones exhibited violent mood swings, and, at times, seemed to display a different personality. Nebel called this “The Voice … a look, a few moments of bitchiness.” The Voice usually vanished rather quickly, but the change was so drastic from Jones’s usually pleasant demeanor that Nebel was startled and distressed.

Colin Bennett writes, “A few weeks after their marriage, [Jones] did tell Nebel that she had worked for the FBI for some time, adding mysteriously that she might have to go out of town on occasion without giving a reason. This left Nebel wondering whether there was a connection between the ‘other’ personality within Candy and the strange trips she said she made for the FBI.”

Nebel began hypnotizing Jones, and uncovered an alternate personality named “Arlene”. Under hypnosis, Jones related a lengthy, elaborate account of her being trained in a CIA mind-control program, often at west coast colleges and universities. Jones and Nebel eventually recorded hundreds of hours of these hypnotic sessions.

Jones said she had some conscious memories of her involvement in the mind-control program: it began in 1960, she said, when an old USO acquaintance (an unnamed retired army general) asked to use Jones’ modeling school as a mailing address to receive some letters and packages. Jones agreed, she said, out of a sense of patriotism.

Eventually, said Jones, she was asked to deliver a letter to Oakland, California on a business trip she had scheduled. Again, Jones reported she agreed, and was surprised to discover the letter was delivered to the same Dr. Jensen who had treated her in the Philippines nearly two decades earlier. Jones said that Jensen and his associate, Dr. “Marshall Burger” (another pseudonym) offered hefty amounts of cash if she was willing to engage in further plans; in their earlier meetings, Jensen had noted that Jones was an ideal subject for hypnosis. Jones agreed, she said, because her modeling school was faltering, and she wanted to keep her sons in their costly private schools.

During hypnosis sessions, an alternate personality called “Arlene” was reportedly groomed by Jensen, so that Jones would have no memory of Arlene’s activities. Jones allegedly made trips to locations as far away as Taiwan. While hypnotized, Jones claimed that Jensen, Burger and others subjected her to painful tortures in order to test the effectiveness of the alternate personality. Donald Bain writes, “[Jones] would be a messenger for the agency in conjunction with her normal business trips.” This type of “super spy” who would have no memory of her activities was perhaps first suggested by Dr. George Estabrooks in his classic 1943 book, Hypnotism.

Again with the USO, Jones visited South Vietnam in 1970; she later suspected her visit had some connection to a disastrous attempt to free American prisoners of war from North Vietnam.

Jones’s and Nebel’s claims were first made public in 1974 (in Donald Bain’s The Control of Candy Jones). Nebel apparently accepted his wife’s claims, and openly discussed killing Dr. Jensen in revenge. However, Nebel was a prankster and a hoaxer of long standing and as he was not above hoaxing his radio audience, some doubted the recovered memories of Candy Jones’s past were genuine; later skeptics would argue that an alleged false memory syndrome was a more plausible explanation.

Several years later, Jones’ story gained more notice after the public disclosure of MK-ULTRA in 1977, and Bain’s book was republished by Playboy Press.

Bain reported that associates in Jones’ modeling schools asserted that Jones indeed had some puzzling absences – supposed business trips where little or no business seemed to be conducted. Bain also writes that another piece of evidence came forth when “Candy inadvertently held onto a passport of ‘Arlene Grant’: Candy in a dark wig and dark makeup.” Jones says she had no memory of dressing up in such an outfit, or of posing for a passport in a different name.

Bain also claimed that a tape recorded answering machine message was left on Jones and Nebel’s home telephone number on July 3, 1973: “This is Japan Airlines calling on oh-three July at 4.10 p.m. … Please have Miss Grant call 759-9100 … she is holding a reservation on Japan Airlines Flight 5, for the sixth of July, Kennedy to Tokyo, with an option on to Taipei. This is per Cynthia that we are calling.” When Jones telephoned the number and asked for Cynthia, she was told that no one of that name worked at the reservations desk. Bain speculates that “Cynthia” might have been “Arlene’s” CIA contact, or perhaps a “code word” meant to trigger a hypnotic suggestion.

Additionally, Brian Haughton notes that “There was also a letter [Jones] wrote to her attorney, William Williams, to cover herself in case she died or disappeared suddenly or under unusual circumstances; she told him she was not at liberty to reveal exactly what she was involved in. Bain wrote to Williams who corroborated this fact.”

It is also worth noting that in 1971, an article by Estabrooks was published in Science Digest, wherein he openly discussed the successful creation of amnesiac couriers of the type Jones claimed to have been.

Dr. Herbert Spiegel, a nationally-recognized hypnosis expert, wrote a foreword to the Playboy Press edition of The Control of Candy Jones. Spiegel opined that though Nebel was an amateur hypnotist, he had in fact hypnotized Jones well, and had seemed to avoid planting ideas or leading Jones’ recollection. Spiegel was not convinced that the entire story was accurate, but he thought that the corroborate evidence Jones, Bain and Nebel had uncovered made it difficult to dismiss the account outright.

A few years after Bain’s book was published, in 1978, Long John Nebel died of cancer. In July 1980 there was a gas explosion in Candy’s apartment building in New York, in which several residents were injured, Candy among them. She suffered a broken neck and sued the landlord for $20 million and Consolidated Edison for $80 million in punitive damages. On 18th January, 1990, Candy Jones died of cancer, aged 64, at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York.

Candy Jones is the subject of the Exit Clov song, “MK ULTRA.”

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