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Thu Nov 24, 2022, 06:14 AM

On Saturday, November 24, 1928, this was the cover of the Saturday Evening Post:



More about J.C. Leyendecker and his illustrations in the Saturday Evening Post:

November 20, 2017 COVER ART, HOLIDAYS

Cover Collection: J.C. Leyendecker’s Thanksgiving

Famed artist J. C. Leyenedecker always had a unique point of view. Who else would have dared paint a “butcher baby” for Thanksgiving?



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More about J. C. Leyendecker:

Sun Jun 20, 2021: What Was The First Gay Ad?

Sun Jun 20, 2021: J. C. Leyendecker would likely have illustrated many an early contender.

Hat tip, The Boys of Fairytown

J. C. Leyendecker



Leyendecker in 1895

Born: Joseph Christian Leyendecker; March 23, 1874; Montabaur, Rhine Province, German Empire
Died: July 25, 1951 (aged 77); New Rochelle, New York, U.S.

Joseph Christian Leyendecker (March 23, 1874 – July 25, 1951) was a German-American illustrator. He is considered to be one of the preeminent American illustrators of the early 20th century. He is best known for his poster, book and advertising illustrations, the trade character known as The Arrow Collar Man, and his numerous covers for The Saturday Evening Post. Between 1896 and 1950, Leyendecker painted more than 400 magazine covers. During the Golden Age of American Illustration, for The Saturday Evening Post alone, J. C. Leyendecker produced 322 covers, as well as many advertisement illustrations for its interior pages. No other artist, until the arrival of Norman Rockwell two decades later, was so solidly identified with one publication. Leyendecker "virtually invented the whole idea of modern magazine design."

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Early life

Joseph Christian Leyendecker ('J.C.' or 'Joe') was born on March 23, 1874, at Montabaur in western Germany, a tiny village 18 km east of the Rhine, to Peter Leyendecker (1838–1916) and Elizabeth Ortseifen Leyendecker (1845–1905). Joseph was the first-born son, and his brother Francis Xavier was born three years later. A sister, Mary Augusta, the third and last child, arrived after the family emigrated to America.

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After studying drawing and anatomy under John H. Vanderpoel at the Chicago Art Institute, J. C. and younger brother Frank enrolled in the Académie Julian in Paris for a year, where they were exposed to the work of Toulouse-Lautrec, Jules Chéret, and also Alphonse Mucha, a leader in the French Art Nouveau movement.

Career

In 1899, the Leyendecker brothers returned to America and set up residence in an apartment in Hyde Park, Illinois. They had a studio in Chicago's Fine Arts Building at 410 South Michigan Ave. On May 20 of that year, Joe received his first commission for a Saturday Evening Post cover – the beginning of his forty-four-year association with the most popular magazine in the country. Ultimately he would produce 322 covers for the magazine, introducing many iconic visual images and traditions including the New Year's Baby, the pudgy red-garbed rendition of Santa Claus, flowers for Mother's Day, and firecrackers on the 4th of July.

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Personal life

Many biographers have speculated on J. C. Leyendecker's sexuality, often attributing the apparent homoerotic aesthetic of his work to a homosexual identity. Without question, Leyendecker excelled at depicting male homosocial spaces (locker rooms, clubhouses, tailoring shops) and extraordinarily handsome young men in curious poses or exchanging glances. Leyendecker never married, and he lived with another man, Charles Beach, for much of his adult life. Beach was the original model for the famous Arrow Collar Man and is assumed to have been his lover.

While Beach often organized the famous gala-like social gatherings that Leyendecker was known for in the 1920s, he apparently also contributed largely to Leyendecker's social isolation in his later years. Beach reportedly forbade outside contact with the artist in the last months of his life.

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Weapons for Liberty – U.S.A. Bonds. An appeal to youth to sell war bonds through a scene of a Boy Scout lifting a sword toward Lady Liberty, by Leyendecker.

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Legacy

Leyendecker's Beat-up Boy, Football Hero, which appeared on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post on November 21, 1914, sold for $4.12 million on May 7, 2021. The previous world record for a J. C. Leyendecker original was set in December 2020, when Sotheby's sold his 1930 work Carousel Ride for $516,100.

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Gallery



Arrow Shirt ad from the 1920s



Drawing from 1913

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See also

Frank Xavier Leyendecker

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MAR 14, 2017

The Oarsmen of J.C. Leyendecker: Homeric or Homoerotic?



A 1932 edition of the American Saturday Evening Post magazine. Strangely, the conservative, anti-New Deal, and middle class family orientated publication had what is (to most modern eyes at least) a sexualised ‘gay’ image of the U.S. Olympic Eight on its cover, painted by the illustrator, J.C. ‘Joe’ Leyendecker. This was not the only time that Leyendecker put semi-naked men on a pedestal.

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A sporting ‘homosocial space’ as depicted by Leyendecker.

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Leyendecker’s illustration for a magazine cover for Thanksgiving 1928 (many American Football games are traditionally played on that holiday).

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Reply On Saturday, November 24, 1928, this was the cover of the Saturday Evening Post: (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves Nov 24 OP
bucolic_frolic Nov 24 #1
Goddessartist Nov 24 #2
Hortensis Nov 24 #3
Bernardo de La Paz Nov 24 #4
Bernardo de La Paz Nov 24 #5
NBachers Nov 24 #8
mahatmakanejeeves Nov 24 #10
mahatmakanejeeves Nov 24 #9
rubbersole Nov 24 #6
sop Nov 24 #7

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 06:29 AM

1. Love how the hands are so much larger than the heads

It's a statement about something.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 06:39 AM

2. Thank you!

I've always loved his work, and appreciate you posting this! He was fantastic!

Happy TDay!

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 06:42 AM

3. The "homoeroticism" is unmissable. In Life! But the gay 1920s

are famous for blossoming of gay culture, and there we see its effects.

I went looking for some term describing that period that I decided not to post, wouldn't be acceptable today, but did find an interesting Atlas Obscura SUBtitle referring to the surges and retreats of cultural changes. The article itself focuses on gay nightlife, but the Life covers illustrate ( ) increased acceptance far beyond the nightlife of the cities.

In the Early 20th Century, America Was Awash in Incredible Queer Nightlife
Then Prohibition ended, and the closet was born.

"All of this activity existed during cultural time that, as historian George Chauncey writes in his book Gay New York, many people believe “is not supposed to have existed.” Popular belief often holds that LGBTQ rights and acceptance was a forward-moving machine beginning with the Stonewall Riots in the 1960s, but when comparing Prohibition Era acceptance versus that of the 1950s, it isn’t so. “It’s not just that they were visible, but that popular culture and newspapers at the time remarked on their visibility—everyone knew that they were visible,” says Heap.

Even smaller towns included news stories about ...

"Rather than curtail the supposed moral decay of the American people, Prohibition played a huge part in making all these fantastic parties happen. Alcohol brought people together, but Prohibition gathered them in new combinations. The Harlem Renaissance was in full effect, and white LGBTQ people found out about the clubs and societies among Harlem’s black LGBTQ performers, frequented these parties, and often became part of them. Suddenly, when everyone was on the search for newly illegal alcohol, black and white gay and lesbian life came into contact with one another and dominant society.

And for a while, dominant society loved it."

https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/in-the-early-20th-century-america-was-awash-in-incredible-queer-nightlife

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 07:57 AM

5. Interesting. What is a "butcher baby"? What does one look like? I searched for meaning, no luck.nt

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Response to Bernardo de La Paz (Reply #5)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 09:01 AM

8. I came here to post the same question. What is a "butcher baby?" I can't find the answer either.

I can only find references to the Plasmatics song, and another band called Butcher Baby.

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Response to Bernardo de La Paz (Reply #5)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 09:52 AM

9. Sorry. Let me get that illustration for you.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 07:57 AM

6. Cover price of 5 cents...

The New Yorker is $9. (Worth it.) Yes, wages were 25 cents an hour....

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Nov 24, 2022, 08:34 AM

7. Very interesting information about Leyendecker.

I'll just add that N. C. Wyeth's name should also be mentioned along with Leyendecker and Rockwell as one of the most talented and popular illustrators of the age.

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