129 Ways to Get a Husband (1950’s article)

If someone told you the best way to get a husband was to “get lost at a football game” or “stand in a corner and cry softly,” you’d probably tell that person to get lost. We certainly would. However, if you lived in the 1950s, things were a bit different, and comments like that were socially accepted.

We recently came across a post that republished a 1958 article from McCall Magazine entitled “129 Ways to Get a Husband.” Kim Marx-Kuczynski of Madison, Wisconsin, and her boyfriend had come across the magazine at a garage sale and thought it was too good to pass up.

“In the United States today there are sixteen million women over the age of seventeen who are still waiting for a marriage proposal,” the article begins. “Presumably, the vast majority of them would like to be married.” The article then goes on to interview 16 people on what they would recommend single women do to improve their chances of going from Miss to Mrs. The results were atrociously hilarious.

McCall's cover

Where to Find a Husband

Where to Find a Husband

We love dogs and think everyone should get one, but we recommend you get one for yourself. Not to find a man!

And having your car break down in strategic places? That’s just silly. It’s 2019 — if your car breaks down, we hope you can handle it yourself rather than waiting for a man to pull over.

how to get a husband: take a class men like

What kind of classes do men like, exactly? We’re going to need more details on that one.

We do support joining a hiking club, but we don’t know why this made the list. Hiking certainly isn’t a male-dominated sport.

Okay, number five isn’t that strange, and publishers like Elite Daily still report where the highest influx of single men and women can be found. But number six? That’s just awful!

We have heard of people apartment hunting through the obituaries. Searching it for widowers is just plain wrong, though.

how to get a husband - learn how to play golf

We love golf, so we approve of number seven. Although, since when is golf just a men’s game?

We also approve of number eight. Get your girls together and check out a few new cities. Single on Valentine’s Day? Check out the most romantic cities in Europe! While this article may have suggested golf and travel to get a husband, we think you should embark in these activities for your own pleasure, regardless of who you may meet.

Um, feed pigeons? No. Definitely not something to take up just to meet a man. However, biking through Europe is certainly appealing for your own well-being.

As we mentioned earlier, get your girlfriends together and take a trip! While you’re there, consider adding a bit of fitness to your days and do a few bike tours.

Wow, get a job in a medical, dental or law school? When we first read this one we thought it suggested going to one of those schools. But just working in one to meet a man? No, thank you.

We will support number 13 to a degree. Just ask your friends if they have any single friend they think you may like. 

“Be nice to everybody” is a suggestion we can get behind. There’s no harm is just being a good person. Getting a government job overseas? Why not?

Again, these suggestions are ones that can be used for self-betterment, so we won’t judge them too harshly.

Is number 16 even a thing? And number 17… that’s just rude.

We’ll refer you back to number 14: “Be nice to everybody.”

Woah. Did you see number 20?!

Can you believe that was actually published? We’ll refer you to our list of 40 Wildly Successful Women Over 40 Who Are Changing Our World. We think they’d agree that this suggestion is thus far the worst of all.

how to get a husband - sit next to a man

Demonstrating fishing tackle? That sounds miserable if you don’t already like to fish! Number 22 isn’t as bad as some of the others. Just sit next to whomever you feel like talking to.

Don’t want to talk to anyone? Sit next to someone with headphones on.

how toget a husband - more awful advice

Again with the widower comment! Why do people keep recommending widowers? There could be single men, divorced people and other eligible bachelors.

And number 24. Leftovers? Yikes.

Okay, yes, maybe you can meet someone in your hometown. But in all honesty, you could meet someone anywhere.

The term “sad sack” had us LOLing. Do people even talk like that anymore?

how to get a husband

Why in the world would you expect to meet a single man at a convention bureau? And why would you want to move? Moving is the worst.

Yes, you may meet someone at work, but you should choose to work somewhere you enjoy. If you think you’d enjoy working in a convention bureau, go for it. If not, find somewhere else.

We love small hotels and charming Airbnbs, so we approve of number 29. If you get a husband out of it, that works, although we wouldn’t expect single men to be staying in charming hotels. That seems like more of a couple’s thing.

And paint outside of an engineering school? That one had us laughing too. How awful! How about “go to engineering school”?

How to Let Him Know You’re There

Number 31 is straight out of 50 Shades of Grey, so we guess that one has withstood the test of time!

We fully approve of calling a man, too. Don’t be afraid to make the first move.

Does anyone actually carry a hatbox these days? We don’t even use them when we travel. And why in the world would carrying a hatbox help you get a husband?

That band-aid comment is kind of funny. But why stop there — what about getting a cast?

If money is important to you, then, by all means, make a lot of it. But don’t do it for a man.

And everyone appreciates a good story, so sure. Go ahead and have a few on hand. The article is right in this one too – don’t tell the same story over and over again. That’s boring.

If you want to get a husband that’s a “mansplainer,” then sure. Go ask him for advice and see how he responds.

Similar to the hatbox though — does anyone still carry a handkerchief? Check out number 40 below, too. The two could go hand in hand.

The article already suggested being bold and calling a potential suitor. Why not just call him and say you have tickets and ask if he’d like to go? You’re a modern woman. You can purchase them yourself.

40 is just terrible. Does the whole damsel in distress thing still work?

how to get a husband

Why would you want the bellboy to page you? Is the article suggesting the bellboy could be your future husband?

The convertible comment we’re on board with. We love convertibles, too!

Everyone loves baked goods. If you bring some to the office, it will certainly help you make some friends. However, we don’t know whether they be girlfriends or potential suitors.

But don’t laugh at all his jokes. Only laugh if you truly find them funny.

LOL – “cultivate a wallflower”? How about “just be nice” to the shy people? You don’t have to cultivate him. Maybe he’s just the quiet type.

Do guys like clumsy girls? Number 31, 38, and 47 sure seem to hint at it.

How to Look Good to Him

how to get a husband

Hmm — perfume is a personal thing, not something a strange man should recommend. If you have a significant other, it’s fine to ask his suggestions on perfume, but it might be weird if you walk up to every single man in your office and asked him to smell your wrist.

And glasses are totally fine. Wear whichever frames you want!

These two are just weird. Yes, you should be able to maintain your composure after a few drinks, but if that’s something you’re worried about, just don’t drink on a date!

And wear your hair however you want. If you want to go blonde one month, brunette the next? Go for it.

Okay yes, we agree that high heels are sexy, but they can wreak havoc on your feet. So you decide whether or not to wear them. You don’t need to wear them just to get a husband.

And wear high heels if you want to regardless of how short he may be!

how to get a husband

Of course, you should tell him he’s handsome or that he looks nice, and we hope he’ll tell you the same.

And yes, take care of yourself. But not because to get a husband. Do it for yourself. However, this one seems to contradict some of the other suggestions on how to get a husband that seem to think men like weak women.

LOL — every third date? This is an odd one. Just wear what you want and what makes you feel confident!

Dress how you want. If you want to stand out, stand out. If you prefer to blend in, that’s fine too.

how to get a husband

Do NOT get a sunburn! What happened to number 55 “take care of yourself”?! If you want to get skin cancer or age prematurely get a sunburn. If not, wear that SPF.

Watch your vocab is a weird one. Are they suggesting to use big words or to avoid them?

Woah, go on a diet? We assume fat shaming wasn’t called out in the 1950s like it is now. You shouldn’t go on a diet to get a husband. You should only diet if you (or your doctor) feel like it’s the best for your health.

Number 61 we approve of. Steak really does taste best when ordered rare.

If you want to risk anaphylactic shock, don’t tell him about your allergies. However, if you want to live, we suggest you fill him in.

Do girls need to be told to look in the mirror before a date? They’ll usually check themselves out to make sure they’re happy with their look without the need for an article to tell them to do so.

Uck, stockings. How 1950s. If it’s cold, feel free to wear tights. If not, go without. And most tights these days don’t have seams, so that part’s a non-issue.

Eh, don’t scrub too hard – you don’t want to hurt yourself.

It is nice to wear things he buys you, though, even if you don’t truly love it. We suggest doing this with anything your parents or grandparents give you too. Everyone appreciates knowing their gift was well-liked.

Ew. Just don’t smoke. It’s gross and will kill you.

Making introductions is good manners, so we agree with that suggestion.

Stick to your moral standards. You should never settle for anyone that isn’t right for you, especially if their morals differ from yours. Be as fussy as you want.

Don’t whine, though. We agree with this tip. No one likes a whiner.

How to Land Him

Cheap dates can be the best date! Examples include a picnic in a park, a stroll along the beach or a beautiful hike. Of course, you can have fun! Not every day needs to be caviar and champagne.

As much as we hate to admit it, we agree with 74 and 75. Maybe don’t introduce him to your parents until you know it’s serious or he may get a little overwhelmed.

Be polite about it, though. Don’t tell your parents to disappear when he’s over. Just invite him to meet your parents at the appropriate time.

We love number 76 in part because of how the context has changed in the last few decades. Double-date with a gay, happily married couple — straight or gay!

And of course, you should compliment him to his friends. If you like him, you should have good things to say about him.

Okay, the mother angle might be a bit much. If you’re close with his mother, feel free to send a birthday card, but if you haven’t even met her, it might be odd.

The same goes for her recipes. If it’s cold out and you’re looking for a few great blended soup recipes and know she some great one, feel free to ask her. But just don’t call her out of the blue and ask for a random recipe.

Feel free to converse with his father about whatever you want to. But don’t agree with what he says just for the sake of agreeing. Have your own opinion!

If you want to buy his niece’s a gift or two, that’s fine. But don’t feel obligated to just to get a husband.

82 we agree with. Don’t come off as too strong!

We agree with 83, but only if it’s the first date (or second or third). Don’t put the cart before the horse. However, if you start dating and think he is husband material, you should talk about children.

84, no. He can scale and clean his own fish. Bonus points if he can cook them too!

Don’t be self-centered and only talk about yourself. Ask questions about him. Again, it’s just good manners.

While we love shopping, we do agree with 86. Don’t stop to look in every window. It can get annoying.

Don’t brag about how much money you have or how much you spend. Also, it’s your hard-earned money. If you want to spend a few grand on a purse, it’s none of his business.

Eh – don’t worry about 88. Does anyone sew their own clothes these days? If you do, more power to you.

Don’t gossip about him or anyone. It’s impolite. But it’s also impolite to be dishonest or make him think you’re dating around if you’re not!

If you like him, tell him. Don’t play games.

It’s okay to be accommodating from time to time, but don’t be forced into something you don’t want to do.

It’s cute when couples have “their song,” but it’s not mandatory. Not even all married couples have that.

93 could get creepy. Please do NOT facebook stalk his exes.

If he asked about your exes, feel free to tell him the truth. Don’t go overboard and talk about them non-stop. Especially if you’re still not over them!

Being flexible is a good life quality to have. No one likes people that are too high-maintenance.

It is cute they included fraternity pins in the article. If you have been “pinned” by a fraternity boy, we feel like this relates back to number 94. If you want to tell a guy about it that’s fine. If he asks, that’s fine as well. Just don’t ruminate over it.

These two are fun. If he is a “wolf” but you’re attracted to wolves, then go for it. And if he needs a makeover, kindly talk to him about it.

You need standards and boundaries. If he’s doing something you don’t like, tell him.

You don’t need to be a damsel in distress. And you certainly don’t need to feign ignorance. Just be yourself.

No with the ashtrays! Just don’t have smoking indoors. Better yet, don’t smoke at all.

Poker could be fun. If he plays, why not learn how to play as well so you two can play together? The same goes for sports. If he plays tennis, try it as well. We hope he’d do the same for you.

Eh, we don’t really approve of either of these. If you tell a man you like his money, we think he’d be put off rather than intrigued.

And not all men want a stay-at-home wife. If your career is important to you, be proud of this and tell him.

Sure, buy a guy a present if you like him. Everyone loves a little something from time to time.

Let’s replace mail with email, though. Feel free to forward him a funny joke if you see one he’ll like!

Feel free to tell dirty stories if you want, but don’t hide your relationship with your mom or dad. If your parents are important parts of your life, why should you hide it?

Please don’t tell him he’ll die if he doesn’t marry you. That might scare him off.

Wild Ideas – Anything Goes

If you can get into Yale, go there. It’s a great school. But do it for you.

Don’t get a hunting license if you don’t want to, though. Many people aren’t okay with killing animals, and that’s totally fine.

We kind of love number 115. If anyone does this, please take a pic and send it to us.

Please take a pic of number 116 too. These are hilarious.

“Whisper campaign.” This is a cute term.

But please don’t attempt to drown yourself at a fashionable beach! What happens if you attempt to drown yourself and no one is paying any attention?

Numbers 119 and 120 are just odd. Riding back and forth to the airport on a bus sounds miserable. Plus, who really rides buses anymore now that Uber and Lyft are around?

And why would you want to get stuck atop a Ferris wheel? First, you’d need someone in the car with you, and if there isn’t, you’ll just be stuck alone. And that wouldn’t be any fun!

“Stand on a busy street corner” sounds more like prostitution than a subtle way for a classy lady to get a husband.

However, in the day of selfies, feel free to ask a handsome stranger to take your photo. While he’s using your phone, feel free to ask him to add his number to it as well. Be bold!

No, do not ask your mom to rent out your old bedroom on Airbnb. That could get dangerous.

Please don’t make and sell toupees either just to get a husband. If you want to start a new business and are interested in the hair business, however, go for it! We won’t judge. 

We like these two. Why not co-own a boat with someone?!

If you see someone with a flat tire, you should definitely offer to help fix it. Every girl should learn how to change a tire.

Okay, please don’t carry a tow chain unless you know how to use it and are willing to. And you don’t want to become the office seamstress, either.

These are quirky ways to get a husband, but very 1950s. Thanks for the repost from Bored Panda!

We hope you enjoyed reading these tips as much as we did. What’s the best (or worst!) dating advice anyone ever gave you? Tell us in the comments! 

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