August 31, 1941

In broad daylight, in the Bronx, in at least two photos, Weegee artfully captured a crushed and precariously balanced car and a covered corpse. PM published on the Sunday of a Labor Day weekend, one of the photos and called attention to deadly driving during the holiday weekend.


Weegee, [Holiday accident in the Bronx], August 31, 1941 (14140.1993)

Holiday accidents took their toll as motorists started on their Labor Day week end. Early yesterday Joseph Morris and his brother’s wife, Charlotte, were killed when this car overturned in Bronx Park. The driver, Anthony Morris, Navy purchasing agent, was injured. Three other auto deaths had been listed last night, the Motor Vehicle Bureau says about 40 will die before Tuesday in New York State. PM, August 31, 1941, p. 18


PM, August 31, 1941, p. 18

Elsewhere in the news: World War Two was turning two.

War’s Second Anniversary: Axis Enemies Consolidating
First Year Went All Hitler’s Way But Not the Second
The Second World War is two years old tomorrow.
Twelve months ago, for Hitler’s foes, the situation was one of dark discouragement. France had been crushed. Britain’s position was precarious. The first year was Hitler’s.
The last twelve months cannot be said to have been the Allies’. But they weren’t Hitler’s either. The Nazi attack on Russia had proved far more costly than Hitler anticipated. In the Soviet Union, the Nazis have already met their Marne. Circumstances are forging a world-wide alliance to match the world-wide Axis at last. The initiative is beginning to pass the anti-Axis bloc.
By The General. PM, August, 31, 1941, p.5

Two years after the Second World War began and about three months before the United Stated entered the war, the last-Sunday-in-August edition of PM was full of news about the war and a wide array of advertisement-free, labor and immigration friendly, information and stories. Some of the noteworthy elements in the end-of-August edition were: a few pages on Hitler’s atrocities, a Dr. Suess cartoon, three pages of photos celebrating the Cossacks, a five page photo-portrait of Hartford, Connecticut, a photo by Martin Harris of Vivian Cherry dancing with Ferdinand the bull at the camp of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, a lengthy and favorable review of a WPA art exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum with photos by Gene Badger, advice on where and how to shop for lamps on the Bowery, and Ralph Steiner’s “Photography” section featured three pages of animal photos made by Ylla, the Hungarian, single named, nom-de-photography of Camilla Koffler (1911-1955).

PM continued its advocacy of increasing the pay of soldiers, featuring a page of photos by the great Gene Badger. 20,000 underpaid soldiers were excepted to come to New York City for the Labor Day weekend. Scores of soldiers were staying at the Soldiers and Sailors Club at 39th and Lexington Avenue.


PM, August 31, 1941, p. 14

This Photographer’s Studio Is Open Only to Animals
By Ralph Steiner
Ylla – lens name for Camilla Koffler – is a good animal photographer. Her mother, who believes in reincarnation, says it’s because Ylla has invariably been an animal lover – never a human before this trip to earth. That’s an idea to have fun with. For instance: what were Goering and Gobbels? Porker and weasel? As for Ylla, however, we’re on safer ground if we attribute her success to a lifetime knowledge and love of animals. Ylla studied sculpture in Paris. To support herself while studying, she made photographs. Once, while working for a French movie company, she was ordered to make a series of portraits of Marlene Dietrich. They were so unflattering and unglamorous that Marlene was furious, and Ylla was black-listed by every movie company in France. That experience, plus the fact that she liked to make people look grotesque and funny, turned her to animal photography. When she discovered that she hadn’t the sculptor’s touch, she opened a portrait studio in Paris-but just for animals.
She photographed pet horses, cats, dogs, fish and anything in the animal line that her clients brought in. She has had to slow down some animals and pep up others. She once starved a carp to stop its whizzing by. One old lady ordered more than $1000 worth of pictures of her cheetah. The cheetah was so fat and lazy that the pictures were dull. Ylla sent the owner away, and brought in stray dogs. The cheetah, hating dogs, became wild -and photographable.
The pictures on these pages are from Ylla’s latest hook, Big and Little.

These white oxen look beautiful, wise and calm like old Chines philosophers. This picture makes it easy to see why oxen are held sacred in India.

A smart Japanese once said that a Pekingese was half dog and half insect. Baby looks like a stuffed toy – cute but likely to scare sensitive children. Mama looks disgusted – the imported bob-bons have just run out, and a dumb servant has offered her candy made in Hoboken.

Snapping Old and Young Together Was a 4-Year Job
Ylla spent four years traveling to the zoological parks of France and England to complete her collection of pictures of old and young animals together. Besides Big and Little, Ylla has published a book on dogs, one on cats, and one made with Julian Huxley in England, on animal noises. War ruined her animal-portrait business in Paris, so Ylla came to New York last March. She is planning to establish a similar animal-portrait studio. Strangely enough, the only accident that has happened all Yalla’s dealings with animals came when three dachshunds, unattended for a moment, spoiled a studio.

Some animals have children that look older than the parents. This baby orangutan looks like an ancient Tammany politician who has smoked too many cheap cigars and downed too many rye whiskies.

Tapirs look like dull animals -the kind that stay a month when you invite them for only a week end.

Young elephants also look old. This pair, though they look like mother and child, are not related.

Despite this zebra’s savagery when anyone came near her child, she looks more decorative than exciting.

Though “baboon” is used derisively, these two look like fine people. Mama is a statue to motherhood

It’s wonderful how a few years will make this dopey dachshund puppy as intelligent as its mother.

PM, August 31, 1941, pp. 47-49

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