Girls Just Wanna Have Fun...

Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko
(Original Images and Text, Copyright (c) 2011 Cynthia ShenetteWhen I started to think about this post for the Annual Swimsuit Edition of the Carnival of Genealogy, I tried to come up with a period appropriate song title for the title of the post.  No matter what song I thought of one song that was not at all period appropriate kept coming to mind, Cindy Lauper's Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.  It occurred to me that it doesn't matter when the song was written.  Girls then and now, just want to have fun, especially when they're at the beach.

I don't know exactly when or where these photos of my grandmother Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko and her friends were taken.  My guess is the late 1910s.  I'm not sure of the location either.  I'm pretty sure wherever it was it was in Massachusetts and on a trolley line from Worcester.  Revere Beach possibly?  I tried to see if I could match up the roller coaster or architecture to vintage photos of Revere Beach, but no such luck.  If anyone recognizes the location I'd love to hear from you.

These photos are just such fun.  I found them in an old scrapbook that was originally buried in my mother's basement.  The photos are small, and I only noticed some of the details in them when I scanned and enlarged them.  They are so wonderfully candid.  Clearly the girls--my grandmother, her sister Helen Bulak, cousin Sophie (Kowalewski) Konopka, and two unidentified friends--are having fun on the beach posing for the camera.

Unidentified left, Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko right

Unidentified Friend

Unidentified Friend

Left to Right: Unidentified, Unidentified, Helen Bulak,
Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko

Helen Bulak left, Unidentified right

Sophie (Kowalewski) Konopka

Sophie (Kowalewski) Konopka

Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko

Sophie (Kowalewski) Konopka left,
Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko right

Sophie (Kowalewski) Konopka

Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko

Sophie (Kowalewski) Konopka

Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko

Left to Right: Unidentified, Unidentified, Helen Bulak, Antonina (Bulak) Szerejko
BFF, or as they use to say back in the olden days, Best Friends Forever.  Some things don't change.  Girls just wanna have fun...

Other Posts You Might Like:

A Pretty Girl on Old Cape Cod
The Stories My Grandmother Told Me
Not So Wordless Wednesday: Cape Cod Memories
Meditation: The Strength of Ordinary Women


Carol said...

WOW, what a great collection of bathing beauty chicks! Girls DID have fun! Totally delightful, such happy smiles!

Susan (Nolichucky Roots) said...

Best beach pix EVER! What a joy.

Dorene from Ohio said...

Delightful collection!

Kristin said...

Such great photos! I don't think my grandmother's ever put on a bathing suit.

Barbara Poole said...

My goodness, all the photos. They were having a blast, and must have used an entire roll of film, but I'm glad they did. Wonderful laughing along with them.

Cynthia Shenette said...

Thank you all for your comments! I love these photos too!

Barbara - I think you are right. They probably did use an entire roll of film. Given that having a camera was something of a novelty at the time, they seemed to enjoy posing for the camera as much as their day at the beach.

Jasia said...

Wow! Fabulous collection of pics! Each and everyone of them deserves to be enlarged, framed, and hung on a wall. I must admit, I have photo envy. You are one lucky girl to have such great period pics. Thanks so much for sharing!

Cynthia Shenette said...

Jasia - Thank you for your comment! I do feel lucky to have all the photos I do. I wish I knew more about them though. I found most of my photos when I cleaned out my mom's house. By that time my grandmother was long gone, and my mom either didn't remember or know anything about them. It's kind of fun doing the research or in this case imagining what their day was like.

Brett Payne said...

So many photos of 1920s and 1930s swimming outfits this carnival, and you have quite a selection of images. Thanks for sharing them.

Nancy said...

Oh, these photos are so much fun! How I wish I had photos like these of my own family! Lucky you! And lucky us that you shared them. Thank you.

Cynthia Shenette said...

Brett and Nancy - Thank you both for your comments!

Sherri said...

You have a lot more photos than I do for my swimsuit edition. :)

It looks like there is a roller coaster in the background of one of those photos. I googled and found that Old Orchard Beach in Maine had a roller coaster (see and Also, I believe that my people spent a lot of time on Nantasket Beach when they lived in Worcester. There is a Paragon Park near there with a roller coaster. I don't know if it is visible from the beach or not.