Dating in the 1920s


In a column about “working class lives,” he told of a clerk named Artie whose girlfriend was losing interest in him and beginning to see other men socially.

When Artie confronts his fading love, he says, “I s’pose the other boy’s fillin’ all my dates?

At that time, there was no such thing as just two young lovers "going out on a date." However, this began to change in the early years of the 20th century, when couples began to go out together in public and unsupervised.

The concept of dating really began at the turn of the 20th century.

Prior to the late early 1900s, courtship was a much more private, unemotional affair.

But how much worse would it be if the very act of it landed you in jail?

According to “Labor of Love: The Invention of Dating” (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), a sprawling new history by Moira Weigel, the first female daters faced exactly that — mistaken, in their quest for love, for prostitutes.

” But when these single women, stripped from their dependency on fathers and husbands, began to be courted in public, police, politicians, and civic leaders were alarmed.