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Biblio Beauties: 50 Vintage Found-Photos of Ladies Reading

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“She is too fond of books, and it has turned her brain” wrote Louisa May Alcott in 1873. Indeed, there’s something exceptional and a bit dangerous about a woman with a book – a sight to be condemned in days of old and still frowned-upon in much of the world. As romance author, Lisa Kleypas, famously said, “A well read woman is a dangerous creature.” (A quote which has subsequently landed on an untold number of coffee cups and t-shirts the world over.)

So, here is a massive library of “dangerous creatures” reading books, magazines, newspapers and whatnot, pulled from every nook and cranny of the retro landscape. Enjoy.

vintage females reading (13)

(1) You can tell this is an old photograph because, if it were current, she would be on her phone.

vintage women reading (4)

(2)-(3) A couple ladies catching up on the classics: Horse magazine and The Great Locomotive Chase

vintage women reading (6)

(4) I presume a sorority has just received their yearbooks

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(5) – (6) A couple blondes enjoying their fashion magazines

vintage women reading (6)

(7) I think “Stellungen” roughly translates from German to “Positions”.  I’m sure it’s a real page turner.

vintage women reading (7)

(8) An Empty Spoon by Sunny Decker sits stuffed next to her purse.  It’s a story about an upper class lady who goes to teach poor kids in Philly by an author, like Harper Lee, who wrote one book then disappeared.

 

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(9) Her German book title says something about a “fun ending”; translators needed. (10) It simply says “Women” at the top; not sure exactly what this long-stemmed lass is reading.

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(11)

vintage women reading (1)

(12) Six girls, one magazine.  Maybe they should consider taking turns.  (13) Barbara’s really into reading… and massive name tags.

vintage women reading (3)

(14) Who’s going to succeed in life – the girl who keeps up with current events in the newspaper, or the girl that swills soda and plays ping-pong? I think you know the answer.

reading miniskirts (1)

(15) – (16)

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(17) Remember when big ashtrays were everywhere – including the library?

vintage women reading

(18)

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(19) The fella behind her is contemplating an action of some kind… I’m thinking he’s up to no good.

reading miniskirts (2)

(20) Large-print books for the vision impaired.

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(21) Not sure why she’s on the hardwood with a perfectly good couch behind her.  Also take note of the excessive amount of towels. (?)

reading miniskirts (2)

(22) These guys are pretending to be interested in their books.  We all know better.

vintage females reading (4)

(23) What? Don’t all women do their reading in red sheer negligees?

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(24) The headline is about serial home invasions…. should they really be smiling?

reading girls (3)

(25)

reading girls (5)

(26)-(27)

vintage ladies reading 33

(28) – (29)

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(30) For some reason, this found photo gives me a slightly creepy feeling… like there’s something bad out there in the dark.

vintage women reading 1

(31) – (32)

vintage women reading 2

(33)

VINTAGE WOMEN READING 3

(34) There’s a million books called “The Prize”, so I’m not sure which book this is. (35)

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(36)

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(37)

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(38)

vintage girl reading 4

(39) She may want to consider reading glasses.

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(40)

vintage females reading (20)

(41) Die Sondigen Frauen, (42)

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(43) So much seventies in one photo: the ashtray, the platform shoes, the TV antenna…

vintage women reading 5

(44) – (45) I told you this would be an eclectic mix.

vintage females reading

(46) – (47)

vintage females reading (25)

(48) “Stranger Than Science”  by Frank Edwards

vintage ladies reading

(49) – (50)

  • Barry Rivadue

    A real page turner!

  • Freakanatcha

    re: 2 & 3: Books, miniskirts – all we’re missing are go-go boots for the perfect 70’s high school yearbook photograph.

  • Bjørn Jakobsen

    The title of the German book is “Here the Fun Ends”, I think. The opposite of a fun ending, I’d say.

  • njguy54

    I never thought about the absence of ashtrays in public places until now. But when I was young, they were everywhere. Even when you entertained at home, it was considered rude to not provide ashtrays, regardless of whether you smoked.

  • AlanOne7

    #9 I’m in love.
    Great post.

  • Nothinglikethesun47

    The Prize by Irving Wallace.

  • Steve Mills

    #17 Love those big ashtrays.

    #25 Chick in the center; my god that’s a horrible hairdo.

    #31 Love the gams. Love the floor.