Saturday, April 25, 2009

Girl Friday 04/24/2009 - Evelyn Nesbit

A day late, but better late than never - yes?

This week's Girl Friday is believed to be one of the inspirations for the "Gibson Girl" image, as created by Charles Dana Gibson. Here is a drawing by Mr. Gibson, for which she sat:

That's the quintisential "Gibson Girl" look, in my opinion. It's the look that engendered the classic look for a generation of women. A look that was only finally rooted out by the "flappers" of the 1920's.

The young model in question, was Miss Evelyn Nesbit - seen here when she first became popular as a model around 1900, in New York.

Evelyn Nesbit

She was a red haired 16 year old that supported her widowed mother by posing for artists and photographers. She also grew popular as a showgirl.

Evelyn Nesbit was the center of one of the most dramatic and convoluted court cases of the day, when her crazy husband, Harry Thaw, shot her first love - the famous architect Stanford White - three times in the face at point blank range in a restaurant, killing him. The newspapers of the day were filled with every lurid detail.

Its interesting to note that paparazi are not entirely a modern phenomenon. Here's a picture of Evelyn during the trial of her husband (1909), that would look right at home on TMZ or any other gossip site:

evelyn nesbit paparazi

That's Evelyn in the middle, holding up a newspaper to block the photographer from taking her picture as she walks to the courthouse. Her whole life is a fascinating story, and you can find out all about it via several internet sites.

For now, though, we'll just appreciate her beauty...

evelyn nesbit 5

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