Pan Am Inspires Nostalgia for the Golden Age of Air Travel
They're gorgeous and glamorous, the flight attendants of Pan Am. It's the new show that has everyone hankering for the golden era of travel.
INSIDE EDITION's Les Trent spoke with some former stewardesses who shared their theory on why there's renewed interest in their once high-flying careers.
"Life was simpler. Everybody was so well dressed and mannered, and et cetera, it was so different," says Barbara Clarkin.
Before men were allowed in and the title changed to "flight attendant," the stewardess profession in the mid to late 1960s was all about glamour and sex appeal, some of it blatant.
A Southwest stewardess said, "Plus one thing no other airline can ever offer–me," during an ad for the airline.
That ad pales in comparison to the one for Braniff, titled "The Air Strip," featuring a stewardess stripping off one uniform to reveal another.
Author Donald Bain wrote a book that titillated the public and, some say, tainted the profession.
"The airlines sold their stewardesses as sex symbols and they did that unashamedly," he said.
Coffee, Tea or Me sold millions in the late '60s and still sells today. Tame by today's standards, it's an account by two stewardesses of sexual escapades and the ups and downs of what was once a much-coveted job.
"We were the crème de la crème, yes we were," says Clarkin.
All of the former stewardesses we spoke to said there was much more to the job than fun and fashion.
"It was glamorous but it was hard, it was hard work," says Lisa Slutsker.
"Your hair couldn't touch your collar," says Margaret Rose.
Cindy Kuhns says, "We had to wear a full-line girdle."
"We had to get into a grooming office before our flight. They actually felt us to see if we had our girdle on," Clarkin tells Trent.
In fact what she describes is actually recreated in a scene in Pan Am.
Lisa Slutsker, who flew for Pan Am from 1969 to 1974, can still fit into the old uniform!
The era is being relived on the small screen, but the job of stewardesses as it once was is a thing of aviation history.