February 23rd, 2018

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Miss Shanghai and Runners-Up (1931)


Miss Helene Sloutsky, in the center, who won the title of Miss Shanghai at Luna Park's bathing beauty contest last night. From left to right are Miss Rene Stibbe, Miss Kathlyn Wilder, Miss Sloutsky, Miss Lucy Cherakova, popular choice for the crown, and Miss Selina Jesu. (The China Press, Sept 1931)

Selina Jesu, aka Lina Tychinsky, was quite a character. She married Baron Reginald d'Auxion de Ruffe and then, according to her school friend's memoir, had an affair with the singer Alexandr Vertinsky. I'll write about her some time (when I have time).

Back to the pageant. This was the first time for this kind of a contest in Shanghai, and Sapajou reacted to it with a cartoon:


"A beauty contest in a cosmopolitan city like Shanghai may easily lead to the complications between blondes and brunettes, involving the problem of sovereign rights, and the question – who is MISTER SHANGHAI..." Published in the NCDN in 1931.