In 1926 Jantzen Knitting Mills hired physical education and swimming expert Paul Huedepohl to head the Jantzen Swimming Association of America. The company’s object was to promote swimming as an all year sport for men and women of all ages. The slogan was “Clean Water”.
Learn to Swim weeks started in 1927 for communities nationwide. The Jantzen Swimming Association and its program engaged pool operators, the local press and retailers in a successful campaign that continued into the 1940-50s. It was a winning situation for all.
Susan Filler Lane recently donated her childhood Jantzen suit to the Archives. It is the first donated suit with a direct connection to the “Learn to Swim” campaign. Susan recalls that her friend’s mother drove the both of them to classes at Jantzen Beach, Oregon...”quite unusual in those days”. The two have remained friends.
The suit is a beautiful red jacquard named Moon Flower and is in excellent condition. It was produced in 1939 and retailed for $2.95.
The newspaper photo shows her being instructed by Paul Huedepohl in 1942.