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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • NORTH TUSCANY COAST, 1948

Thomas Burgess

Thomas Burgess

In 1911 Thomas W. Burgess was the second man to swim the English Channel. It took him 22 hours and 35 minutes. It's not clear if this photo is from that event, but he's definitely not dressed for recreational swimming. Burgess also swam for Great Britain in the 1900 Summer Olympics. George Grantham Bain Collection.

 

Grit

He swam 88 miles in his crossing due to currents - eating chicken legs & chocolate. An astonishing man.

Whoa!!

What would happen if he went to a public beach wearing that back in the day when people wore their sunday best at the beach. Eye candy for da ladies.

BVD's

For strangers (like me):
BVD=Bradley, Voorhees & Day (A trademark used for undershirts and underpants. This trademark sometimes occurs in print with a final 's. )

Kelp

I think it looks like he got caught up in some sea kelp.

Nice

Nice package.

Burgess

Tighty whiteys indeed! He does everything in his BVD's.

Call the Coast Guard

Mr Burgess is apparently involved in a plum-smuggling racket.

"Look at my junk!"

"Look at my junk!"

Thomas Burgess

He would have been around 32 yrs of age when he made his 14th attempt.I was told by my father that he ate Quaker Oats porridge mixed in milk and sugar. -- Gerald Morris, 72 yrs.

Impressive... swim, that is...

The pre-speedo suit aside, you have to admire the guy's tenacity... Captain Mathew Webb made it across the English Channel on his second attempt... but Thomas Burgess made it on his 14th attempt!!! Not many swimmers I've met could keep at it that long! Laugh at the suit if you want, but that is one tough swimmer.

That's The New Gucci Swimsuit

I think I saw it at Bergdorf's today.
Quite a look I must say!
I guess all the guys will be wearing those this summer...

Burgess

These guys used to rub themselves down with Goose/Duck fat to act as an insulator to keep themselves warm.

Thomas Burgess

Laugh and make fun if you must, but, when did you last swim the English Channel? Go man go!

Speedos Would be An Improvement

Wow. I thought Speedos were bad. At least they have some pretense to fashion and style. What Mr. Burgess is wearing is basically a sling. One made of ugly (tie dye?) fabric at that.

Egad!

Where is his bathing-costume?! Ladies, avert your eyes.

 
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Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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