1900’s swimming

Jeff Delaney’s book Newport Beach has some fun beach photos from the early 1900’s and before when this location began to be popular as a tourist stop.

Out for a good time! c. 1903

Newport Beach, c. 1909. Catalina Island, another popular spot for vacationers, is visible in the distance.

Back in early 1900, early swimmers had to proceed cautiously.  It would be a number of years before lifeguards came on the scene.

Sunset on the Pacific, c. 1907.

Victorian morals demanded that bathing attire resembled everyday clothing.  I suppose partially to ensure the proper attire, bathers could rent bathing togs at bathhouses in both Newport and Balboa.

c. 1909

Bathing at Newport Beach, c. 1908.

Today’s bikinis and swim trunks have made the process of wringing salt water from bathing suits a lost art:

"Are There Any More at Home Like You?" c. 1909

The Pavilion, Balboa Beach, c. 1907.

The pavilion in Balboa Beach originally consisted of an 8,000 sq. ft. meeting room on the second story and a simple bathhouse on the first floor, where people could change from street attire into bathing suits.

Do you have anything you want to add to the history of swimming back in the 1900’s?

Read more about Newport Beach’s area by looking through my articles in the category “Local History.”

Renee West
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Renee West

Broker Associate at Villa Real Estate
I'm a real estate broker associate in Newport Beach & Corona del Mar, CA, with Villa Real Estate.
Contact me at (714) 914 9060 or rwest@villarealestate.com for all your real estate wants and needs.
Renee West
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