The Roaring 20's

By: Kylie Hall and Emily Decker


Flappers were carefree young women, with short, bobbed hair, heavy makeup and short skirts. They symbolized liberated women.

Babe Ruth was a sports figure who soared in popularity; he was a great outfielder who hit 60 home runs in 1927. This record that stood for 34 years.

In May 1927, Charles Lindbergh became the first person to fly alone across the Atlantic Ocean.

The Dress- Coco Chanel was one of the revolutionary designers of this time period, due to her creation of the boyish-look that flappers adorned. Hemlines on dresses,became shorter and shorter , corsets were swapped for undergarments called step-ins. Rayon stockings were worn and were rolled down to draw attention to the knees and legs. The dresses were short, slim and embellished with fringe. This made them great for dancing!

The Charleston

This was a dance frequently enjoyed by the young people and flappers of the twenties. It was an energetic dance that consisted of swinging your arms and legs. This dance originated from the African- American population on an island off of the coast of Charleston, SC. Jazz music was typically the kind of music that this would be danced to. The rhythm of the dance matched the frequency of the building and caused it to collapse.This was a dance craze that swept America. You can view the Charleston on the flapper video to see exactly what it looked like.


Improvisation was when new rhythms and melodies were created during a performance. Just like the flappers, jazz was a new type of music that would open up into an entirely new era of music in the US. This was a new time in the US and our music reflected that. Manufacturing industries began booming. With an increase of about 60% in these industries in less than a decade. People in the United States began making more money than ever thought conceivable, and people were living lavishly. Cars, movies and radios lead to a glamorous life. The radio, with over 11 million sold lead to this era of sound. Jazz was an exciting, risque type of music reminiscent of the flappers. It was fun and flirtatious music that nobody had heard anything quite alike. Louis Armstrong was one of the kings of jazz with his hits such as Ain't’ Misbehavin’, Heebie Jeebies and many others. One of his more somber, yet entirely famous songs is What a Wonderful World. Best known African American jazz musicians were also, pianist and composer Duke Ellington, and singer Bessie Smith. Best known white jazz musicians were Paul Whiteman and Bix Beiderbecke. Jazz lead to other forms of the music such as bebop who was lead by people such as Dizzie Gillespie and Charlie Parker. However, these styles sprung up in the late 30’s and 40’s. Some famous writers were F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edith Wharton, Sinclair Lewis, D.H.Lawrence, T.S.Eliot, Ezra Pound, Eugene O'Neill, H.G. Wells, and Carl Sandburg. These writers talked mostly about the society of the time.


Mass media was forms of communication, such as newspapers and radio, that reach millions of people. Hollywood, California, became one of the country's leading businesses. The many Americans movies offered them entertainment and escape. The first ones were black and white and silent, with the actor's dialog printed on the screen and a pianist playing music to accompany the action.

The radio brought entertainment into people's homes. In 1920 the first commercial radio broadcast, which carried the presidential election returns were transmitted. The networks broadcasted popular programs across the nation. The radio offered news, concerts, sporting events, comedies, opera, western, classical, country, blues, and jazz.

Slang Terms

Alarm Clock: Chaperone Bank’s Closed: No kissing Bean Picker: An individual who attempts to patch up trouble (i.e. picks up spilled beans) Bee’s Knees: See “Cat’s Pajamas” Berries: Great (i.e. It’s the berries) Big Cheese: an important person (originated in this period) Blouse: Go, to go (i.e. Let’s Blouse) Cat’s Meow: Something highly sought after Cat’s Pajamas: Anything good, the best, the greatest Dapper: Flapper’s father Ducky: Term of approval Dud: A wall flower DuddingUp: Dressing up Embalmer: A bootlegger Father Time: Any man over 30 years of age FireExtinguisher: A chaperone Flapper: Girl Flat Shoes: A fight between a Flapper and her Goof

Fluky: Funny, different, odd Forty-Niner: Man who is prospecting for a rich wife Gimlet: A chronic bore Goof: Sweetie Handcuff: Engagement ring His Blue Serge: His sweetheart, his girl Hooch: liquor Hopper: Dancer Out on Parole: A person who has been divorced Scofflaw: A lawless drinker of illegally made or illegally obtained liquor (coined in 1923) Sharpshooter: A good dancer who does not hold back while spending money Snake Charmer: A female bootlegger Tomato: Good looking girl with no brains Trotzky: Old lady with a moustache and chin whiskers Weasel: Girl stealer Whangdoodle: Jazz music, jazz band Whiskbroom: Man with whiskers