For sale is an original 1940 LIFE MAGAZINE COVER with the DIONNE QUINTUPLETS and 1940 KANSAS STAR NEWSPAPER FEATURE on the DIONNE GIRLS 6TH BIRTHDAY PARTY. The life magazine cover is in very good condition and suitable for framing. The picture features the girls dressed for their first communion. The color newspaper feature is four pages and has a fair amount of edge damage, tears and overall wear. The newspaper feature has lots of adorable pictures and interesting advertisements. Each newspaper page measures about 21 1/2 inches by 15 1/4 inches. The Dionne quintuplets were used to market a great number of products. A great advertising collectible.
The Dionne quintuplets were born May 10, 1934. They were the first quintuplets known to have survived their infancy. The identical girls were born just outside Ontario, Canada. All five survived to adulthood. The Dionne girls were born two months premature. The mother, financially poor with five previous children, was approached by fair exhibitors for Chicago’s Century of Progress exhibition within days of the girls’ birth, seeking to put the quintuplets on display and show them to the world. At the time it was not unusual for “incubator babies” to be displayed at fairs and other exhibitions. After four months with their family, the quintuplets were made wards of the state for the next nine years under the Dionne Quintuplets’ Guardianship Act, 1935. The Ontario provincial government and those around them began to profit by making them a significant tourist attraction.
In the 1930s, the Dionne girls starred in three Hollywood feature films, which were essentially fictionalized versions of their story. In November 1943, the Dionne parents won back custody of the sisters. The entire family moved into a newly built house. The yellow brick 20-room mansion was paid for out of the quintuplets’ fund. The home had many amenities that were considered luxuries at the time, including telephones, electricity and hot water and was nicknamed “The Big House”.
Life was published weekly from 1883 to 1972, as an intermittent “special” until 1978, and as a monthly from 1978 until 2000. During its golden age from 1936 to 1972, Life was a wide-ranging weekly general-interest magazine known for the quality of its photography. Life became the first all-photographic American news magazine, and it dominated the market for several decades. Possibly the best-known photograph published in the magazine was Alfred Eisenstaedt’s photograph of a nurse in a sailor’s arms, taken on August 14, 1945, as they celebrated Victory over Japan Day in New York City.