Tuesday, March 12, 2019

LIFE Goes to the Locker Rooms

LIFE Magazine was a fixture of 20th Century American life, and their photographers chronicled an age, including quite a few visits to mid-century professional and college sports locker rooms.  My research has found that they told the men that their privates would be cropped out of the published pictures, and that was true.  What they didn't know was the those pictures would go into an archive and be all over the internet 50-60 years later.  So today we look at five of my favorite locker room photos which the LIFE Archive generously allows to be used for non-profit purposes.


  1. The locker room shots should have been published long ago. Society forgets there was a time when nudity was not a horrible thing. The Y even banned men from wearing swim trunks in the pools - guys were required to be nude, the girls were required to be clothed. My, how times have changed, eh?

    1. There was one in a World War II-era article on democracy. The boys at a school thought of the line at the shower as an example. They're all equal, separated only by chance, with those who got there first receiving priority.

      Nudity was also associated with health for a time. For all of rhis, however, only make nudity was shown, for modesty reasons.