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Found Photos Capture Men On Prom Night

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These snapshot portraits, acquired by collector Robert E. Jackson, feature young blades in tidy, rented Bond and bandleader suits on their way to The Prom to meet a date wearing a strapless taffeta dress. Is that mom or pop behind the camera snapping the bright-eyed fruit of their loins on the cusp of adulthood, telling him how handsome he looks? He’s stood in the family home on the threshold of leaving. The backdrops – all drapes, brass knobs and plastic covers over the easy chairs – take us back. He’s going forward…

 

Vintage prom fashions

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“And from the whole she deduced this useful lesson, that to go previously engaged to a ball, does not necessarily increase either the dignity or enjoyment of a young lady.”
― Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

 

Vintage prom fashions

 

Miss Collins: Carrie? Carrie. Carrie, what’s the matter? What happened?
Carrie: Nothing.
Miss Collins: Was it one of the girls? Did one of the girls do something to you?
Carrie: No.
Miss Collins: What is it, then? You can trust me, you know that? Would you tell me?
Carrie: I got invited to the prom.
Miss Collins: That’s great! That’s fantastic! So what are you down here moping around for?
Carrie: Tommy Ross asked me.
Miss Collins: That’s even better. He’s really cute, huh?
Carrie: I know who he goes around with. They’re just trying to trick me again. I know.
 Carrie, 1976

 

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Marty McFly: Let’s go over the plan again, so eight-thirty where are you going to be?
George McFly: I’m gonna be at the dance.
Marty McFly: And where am I gonna be?
George McFly: You’re going to be in the car with her…
Marty McFly: Right, so right around nine o’clock she’s going to get very angry with me.
George McFly: Why would she get angry with you?
Marty McFly: [reluctantly] Because, George, nice girls get angry when guys take advantage of them.
Back to The Future, 1985

 

Vintage prom fashions Vintage prom fashions

 

‘Cause don’t forget who’s taking you home
And in whose arm’s you’re gonna be
So darlin’
Save the last dance for me
Save The Last Dance For Me, The Drifters

 

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Vince: Hi, I’m Vince Fontaine, I’m judging the dance contest.
Marty: I don’t think I’m entered.
Vince: A knockout like you? What’s your name?
Marty: Marty.
Vince: Marty what?
Marty: Maraschino. You know, as in cherry.
Grease, 1978

 

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“A clever, ugly man every now and then is successful with the ladies, but a handsome fool is irresistible.”
― William Makepeace Thackeray, The History of Henry Esmond, Esq.

 

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I thought he was really handsome in his tux, but you could tell by the look on his face it suited him like a sock on a rooster. He didn’t say much all evening long.
— Dolly Parton (Dolly: My Life and Other Unfinished Business)

 

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Robert E. Jackson has a sublime collection of vernacular photo ephemera.