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Short-Sleeved Sports Shirt
1939

"Play demands its own special apparel"
In 1939, this yellow rayon, soft-collar shirt was considered fashionable dress for casual activities. The menswear clothing industry called it a sports shirt, a recently established category of men's apparel. In the previous century, only laborers wore soft-collar shirts; everyone else wore various styles of starched-collar shirts. Polo, however, was one of the few sports with its own specially designed shirt--a jersey pullover with a turned-down collar. The soft-collar style inspired the development of other casual shirts, which began to appear in the late 1920s and early 1930s. "Play has become a definite and most essential part of daily life," declared "Men's Wear," a clothing industry publication, in 1936, "and play demands its own special apparel. The sport shirt is the big answer." That same year, "Esquire" reported, "The shirt is fast stepping up to the dignity of a major garment instead of walking humbly as an accessory."

Notes
28-1/2" long
Web display only

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