Wednesday’s ad is for “Rheingold Beer,” from 1952. This ad was made for the Rheingold Brewery, which was founded by the Liebmann family in 1883 in New York, New York. At its peak, it sold 35% of all the beer in New York state. In 1963, the family sold the brewery and in was shut down in 1976. In 1940, Philip Liebmann, great-grandson of the founder, Samuel Liebmann, started the “Miss Rheingold” pageant as the centerpiece of its marketing campaign. Beer drinkers voted each year on the young lady who would be featured as Miss Rheingold in advertisements. In the 1940s and 1950s in New York, “the selection of Miss Rheingold was as highly anticipated as the race for the White House.” The winning model was then featured in at least twelve monthly advertisements for the brewery, beginning in 1940 and ending in 1965. Beginning in 1941, the selection of next year’s Miss Rheingold was instituted and became wildly popular in the New York Area. In this ad, from May of 1952, the search for next year’s Miss Rheingold began with an event at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. Over 700 aspiring models registered to become the next Miss Rheingold, including many working professional models. This photo story, entitled “A Busy, Bust Day For Pretty Models,” details the events of the day, which included the current Miss Rheingold, Anne Hogan, and a former winner, as well. From these 700 candidates, they would begin to work down eventually to six finalists, whom consumers would then vote for in a contest that eventually exceeded the number of votes in national presidential elections.
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