"Solid Diggers"-
American youth culture 1942

An article by André

I didn't want to withhold this information and pictures from an article of the Life magazine of September 1942 from you. It shows the American counterpart to the German swing youth.
In the late thirties a new youth culture arised in the USA called themselves "Solid Diggers". These teenagers which obviously originate from more elevated social circles had a striking appearance and provoked the conservative American society with their behavior. They loved fast, hot swing and danced a "wild" Jitterbug. The strongholds of her dance clubs were Washington DC, Harlem and Hollywood. Their wasteful, lively craving for pleasure contradicted the American war politics. The convention age was set down to 18, not at last to stop the "shrill hustle and bustle" of these teens.

The Outfit:

"Hepcats " (boys) and "Hepchicks" (girls) loved the decadent, chic lives. Their clothing consisted in mostly shrill colors of high-quality substances, always made individually. 

The "Hepchicks":

The girls usually wore their shoulder-length hair open. Contrary to the general fashion they tried to provoke by wearing a flared skirt that didn't cover the knees . The "Juke-Coat", a long jacket similar to a men's lounge jacket, covered the hips. This outfit was oblige as well as the seamless stockings, which were almost exorbitant at that time.

The "Hepcats":

The boys wore their long hair casual - and a "Zoot-Suit". This Suit had a waisted sports jacket with slot bags and shoulder pads and a breadth of the shoulders which was up to 7 inches. The always different colored pants with a protruding area around the knee ended in tight-fitted (unusual in the 40s) trouser legs. Sometimes the Hepcats" wore extremely long key or watch chains.

Listen to:
Real Player-Format
"I want a Zoot-Suit"

As seen at these examples the industry and business world noticed that a new, young buyer group arised here.