Miss Ireland 1929
Clare Russell Stritch became ‘Miss Ireland‘ in 1929 and then entered the Miss Europe 1929 contest but sadly didn’t go on to win. Later in 1929 she decided to enter the ‘The International Pageant of Pulchritude’ which had been established as an annual event in Galveston, Texas in 1926. However, it was not to be as the the Roman Catholic Bishop of Galvestone, C.E.Byrne, stirred up a storm against the event, and stated that ‘no decent girl would parade half-naked in front of the mob’. Despite being of Church of Ireland faith Clare Stritch did not enter the competition which went on to be won by an Austrian girl Lisl Goldarbeiter. The newspapers dubbed her ‘Miss Universe‘ as she was the first non-American to win the competition and the name stuck. Ms.Goldarbeiter went on to marry an Austrian, Fritz Spielmann, heir to a silk necktie fortune in Vienna. World War .II. brought an end to their dream existence and she ended her days in Budapest where she died in 1997.
Snippets from a 2006 documentary about the 1929 contest – “Miss Universe 1929 – Lisl Goldarbeiter. A Queen in Wien” are available on YouTube – here’s one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prFGpK4xy9o
Clare Stritch on the other hand has not left much of a footprint – at least not one that I have discovered so far. She was born in Dublin in 1901 and lived at 17 North Great Georges Street. Her father, John Russell Stritch, was a well-known solicitor and Swedish Consul. Hopefully more information will come to light.
The card above was published by A.N. of Paris.