11-09-1931

Broadway Brevities tabloid

BROADWAY BREVITIES probes the long and storied history of Lesbian clubs in New York City with the frontpage article “Sapphic Sisters, Scram!” as written by “Connie Lingle.” The publication, generally credited as America’s first national weekly gossip tabloid, was launched in New York in 1916 and edited by a Canadian named Stephen G. Clow. Brevities started out covering high society and the A-list of the New York theater world, but by the 1930s had begun covering more general vice and ran splashy features on sex, drugs, gang violence and crime.

 

This was possibly the first time a gossip magazine had made real efforts to attract readers who weren’t members of the elite classes; it didn’t presume its readers had a close familiarity with any given social or professional world. In 1932, New York City banned newsstands from selling the racy tabloid, and it appears to have folded sometime around late 1933.