Ziegfeld, The Great Glorifier
By Eddie Cantor and David Freeman. Alfred H. King, New York : 1934. 5 2/3 x 8 2/3″ HB in illustrated dj, 166 pp. The authors trace the life and career of Florenz Ziegfeld, arguably the greatest entertainer of his day, recalling “Zieggy’s” erratic personality, his artistry, and most of all, the girls for which he was famous. Photo section includes portraits of seven principals and twenty-five showgirls from Ziegfeld’s Follies.
Eddie Cantor was a hugely popular comedian and actor in the 1920′s and 30′s, and the star of the Ziegfeld Follies of 1927, Ruth Etting’s first show on Broadway. They worked together again on Broadway a year later in Ziegfeld’s Whoopee! But Cantor’s history with Florenz Ziegfeld actually dates back to his Broadway debut, in the Ziegfeld Follies of 1917.
With Cantor’s name on the cover, photos of the Ziegfeld Girls inside, and a price tag of one dollar, the books sold well, and according to Wikipedia, H. L. Mencken asserted that these books did more to pull America out of the Great Depression than all government measures combined.
Occasionally, if you look, you can find one of these vintage books on eBay or Amazon.
The Ziegfeld Girls, as photographed by Alfred Cheney Johnston.