Re: clothing in the 1960s (fwd)
Wed, 26 Jun 1996 12:50:59 -0400

Sender: John Pastore <>
Subject: Re: clothing in the 1960s

Julia Stein wrote:


> And now, for blue jeans. I work with college students in a group that tries
> to support garment workers organizing into unions. I said that blue jeans
> were first worn by the '49ers and were clothing worn by miners which was
> news to all the college students...


Just to expand a bit on blue jeans. In New York City, and perhaps
elsewhere, during, at least by, the 50's and into the early 60's "blue
jeans" were not called "blue jeans", but, instead, "dungarees" as if such
was the attire for stable hands when it came time to clean a barn of its
dung. When Levi Strauss started marketing 'dungarees' to women, I remember
the term 'blue jeans' coming about for the first time, at least, in that

The first pair I owned, by the way, drew a question from my father, who
was brought up by an Italian immigrant tailor (his tone was disapproving):
"Why are you wearing 'dungarees'(stable-hands wear dungarees)?" I've heard
the same tone here in the Yucatan when wearing leather sandals while on
past occasions I taught English: "Why are you wearing leather sandals (the
Indians wear leather sandals)?

In both cases the tones of the questions tempered with the unsaid
understanding: "Why, when you can afford better?"

John Pastore
Hotel Plaza Caribe
Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mx.