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They would become known as the Inter-City Beauties.

Each individual winner’s prize would be an all expense paid trip to Atlantic City’s Second Annual Fall Frolic as an honored guest.

Established in 1921 by local Atlantic City businessmen as a way to extend the summer season, The Miss America Organization has since grown to become one of the most recognizable household names in America.

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Once there, frolic organizers placed the young women in an “Inter-City Beauty” contest in which the judging was largely based on their general appeal in appearance, personality, conversations with the judges, and interactions with the crowds.

In order to build hype, the women were later put in the running for the Golden Mermaid trophy given to “The Most Beautiful Bathing Girl in America.” Margaret Gorman swept both events.

The first pageant winner reflected these changes in attitude towards beauty. She also bore a striking resemblance to silent screen star Mary Pickford, who was just achieving fame as ‘America’s Sweetheart’.

Samuel Gompers, head of the American Federation of Labor, noted in the New York Times, “She (Margaret Gorman) represents the type of womanhood America needs; strong, red-blooded, able to shoulder the responsibilities of home-making and motherhood.

In 1928, the protestors won, and the pageant was discontinued as commercial supporters withdrew in response to accusations that the pageant lacked decorum.

1920s Timeline September 25th: Atlantic City businessmen stage a “Fall Frolic” in order to attract tourists to the seasonal resort beyond the traditional end of summer, Labor Day. Decisions were made to increase the number of scheduled public attractions and make it a two-day event the following year.

With no rule barring her participation, she finished as a runner up.

But her inclusion fueled the fire started by women’s and religious groups against the competition as lacking in decorum.

They competed against the winners of “professional” and “amateur” ranks, representing over two hundred women, for the elusive Golden Mermaid.

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