The Bathing Hour

Children on the south side of the Breakers pier.
The Breakers pier served as the first Port of Palm Beach. At one time it had train tracks to the end of the pier where ships unloaded cargo. The same track served later as the mule trolley line linking the Breakers to the Hotel Royal Poinciana. The hurricane of 1928 destroyed the pier. The remnants are a popular destination for local divers.
These ladies opt out of wearing the long, heavy woolen bathing costumes of the day. Alert lifeguards kept a watchful eye on the women in particular who risked being dragged under the waves by the sheer weight of their wet bathing dresses.
A cropped version of this picture was a popular postcard of the day on which lucky vacationers could boast of swimming in the dead of winter. There's a lot going on in this richly detailed photograph featuring all manner of resort fashions ca.1905 (click to enlarge.)
The sign in the center reads:  "The bathing hours on the beach are 11 to 1 during which expert Life Guards & Boatmen are provided for the safety of Casino Guests. Please be guided by their advice when entering the water. Geo. E. Anderson Supt."
In the foreground, a messenger from Alligator Joe reminds the tourists of his daily performance at 3:30.
The shoreline is lined with beach chairs topped with awnings (for the less adventurous.)
(Photos- Library of Congress/Detroit Publishing Collection)

No comments: