The Young Politicos

July 7, 1960, Kennedy Girls
Photograph by Ray Graham / Los Angeles Times 

Kennedy girls, from left, Eleanor Dudley, Susan Reeves, Jeanne Lytle and Marilyn Raran with Democratic Party official John M. Bailey of Connecticut. 

One thing that struck me in going through the photos of the 1960 Democratic National Convention is the emphasis on youth. It’s difficult, for example, to find any reference to the Young Democrats at the 1956 convention in Chicago.

In a 1960 Esquire article on the convention, Norman Mailer said:

“One of the private amusements of the convention was to divine some of the qualities of the candidates by the style of the young women who put on hats and clothing and politicked in the colors of one presidential gent or another. Of course, half of them must have been hired models, but someone did the hiring and so it was fair to look for a common denominator.

“The Johnson girls tended to be plump, pie-faced, dumb sexy Southern; the Symingteeners seemed a touch mulish, stubborn, good-looking pluggers; the Kennedy ladies were the handsomest; healthy, attractive, tough, a little spoiled — they looked like the kind of girls who had gotten all the dances in high school and/or worked for a year as an airline hostess before marrying well. But the Stevenson girls looked to be doing it for no money; they were good sorts, slightly horsy-faced, one had the impression they had played field hockey in college.”

On the jump, photos from nearly all the candidates’ campaign workers. Curiously enough, there’s no photo of Sen. Hubert Humphrey’s supporters.

July 13, 1960, Johnson Workers
Los Angeles Times file photo

Johnson campaign workers.

July 9, 1960, Stevenson Youth 
Photograph by George R. Fry Jr. / Los Angeles Times

The young intellectuals – for Adlai Stevenson.

July 7, 1960, Symington Youth
Photograph by John Malmin / Los Angeles Times

A hootenanny breaks out at the Stuart Symington campaign headquarters!

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
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