The American nudist organization
was sedate group until it took in stripper Evelyn West as a member. Then
a big hullabaloo exploded over whether Miss Treasure Chest was doing right
"Treasure Chest" West and the Nudists
by Lou Felice
Sir! A Magazine for Males
Vol. 13 No. 3, February 1956
American Sunbathing Association is an organization of nudists who take
themselves seriously, and the quickest way to get stripped of your membership
is to act as though you think nakedness is one huge joke. When strip teaser
West served as bridesmaid at a nudist wedding in Denver and wore
a sign reading--"Park your fig leaves upstairs"--petitions were passed
around to have her banished from organized nudism.
Chesty Miss West, whose bosom
tapes at 39 1/2 Inches, regarded the whole uproar as a frame-up to embarrass
her frame. "How can they bar me from nudism?" "she 'asked' one official.
"They can't pin a thing on me."
Evelyn took time out from
her work at a Buffalo burlesque theatre to make a few barbed remarks about
June Lange, the Los Angeles nudist leader who sponsored the petitions.
"This is a battle of the bosoms," Evelyn declared.
"June Lange is a pretty girl
with a good bust who poses for nudist magazines. Her husband Ed Lange,
is a photographer. Until I came along she was the big cheese--or cheesecake--of
the nudist movement."
While serving as bridesmaid
at the wedding, Miss West says she wore nothing but her false eyelids and
toenail polish. "As for the sign," she explained, "It was handed to me
by somebody at the camp. I held it over my head because I considered that
nudists should be really nude."
The wedding hullabaloo isn't
the first time Evelyn wiggled herself into the news. Ever since the day
Lloyd's of London Insured her bountiful charms for $50,000 she has bounced
in and out of the headlines with regularity.
Under her legal name, "Evelyn
$50,000 Treasure Chest West," she has performed a sizzling striptease act
in many of the nation's largest cities--and on several occasions her act
has had a courtroom finale.
In Oklahoma City, for instance,
Evelyn was hauled into court and charged with "indecent exposure and exhibition"
after giving an overflow night club audience a provocative demonstration.
She was on the witness stand for almost an hour, protesting that only an
evil-minded person could find fault with her dance.
Two women, who testified against
Evelyn, charged that her movements, lack of clothes, bumping and bouncing,
excited men to "lewd and vicious" thoughts. More over, the complainants
alleged that Miss West's dance with a dummy was just too "sexy" for words.
Evelyn replied that she had
performed in 30 other cities without getting arrested, and insisted her
dummy dance was merely a comedy ballet, portraying an elderly gentleman
making ardent love to a young lady.
The judge finally decided
in favor of Evelyn on the grounds that he wasn't prepared to "draw the
line between artistry and lewdness."
As the first professional
strip teaser to join a nudist camp, Evelyn became a popular attraction
at naturist gatherings by giving lectures on the joys of going naked. One
of her appearances, near Battle Creek, Michigan, nearly caused a riot.
It all began when Dr. Braxton
B. Sawyer, who delivers sermons over 27 radio stations in a four-state
area of the middle west, appeared fully clothed at the Sunshine Gardens
resort for the American Sunbathing Association's national convention. He
brought along a camera to take pictures but ran into trouble when an attendant
saw him "overly dressed."
"You can't come here like
that," snapped the attendant, who wore nothing but a frown.
Dr. Sawyer was eventually
chased into a nearby field while some body else called the police. After
a lengthy argument with the good preacher, a compromise was reached permitting
him to take pictures within a limited area.
"Then, all of a sudden," the
minister later told friends, "a big station wagon rolled into camp and
they forgot about me for a while. They were all
looking at Evelyn Chest--or West--that show person who calls herself the
Treasure Chest Girl
"Well, I took pictures of
her for about five minutes. Then I looked up and saw at least 12 men coming
towards me. I told them I'd let them have the camera right in the face.
They jumped on me and dragged me into the dust, pushing my face into the
dirt, and taking the film away from me."
Wearing nothing but spike-heeled
shoes, Miss West was keynote speaker at the convention and her lecture
acclaimed nudism as the "answer for complete happiness and health."
Before she entered burlesque,
Evelyn's real name was Patricia McQulllan. Her bosom, by far the outstanding
thing about her figure, soon made the name "West" a featured attraction
in the striptease circuit.
When she applied to Lloyd's
of London for insurance, Evelyn wrote a letter on pink notepaper, each
sheet printed across the top with a silhouette showing her body reclining
at ease during a telephone conversation. Publicity men, after hearing about
the insurance policy, began booming Evelyn as the "Hubba Hubba Girl" with
the $50,000 bosom.
Shortly after her fame as
a strip teaser reached its peak, the Post Office Department banned her
pin-up pictures from the mails. Postal examiners ruled that 22 of her photos,
which were advertised for sale at one dollar, had a "lewd" aspect. They
also charged that other pictures of Miss West were being offered at rates
that went, up as the exposure increased. This is probably the first time
a dancer has been accused of performing a striptease by mail.
Despite her ups and downs,
however, Evelyn has emerged as a real authority on the female bosom. She
has even accused several of Hollywood's most famous beauties of taking
their figures. Writing in a recent magazine article, Evelyn declared:
"And what would you say if
I told you, strictly on the Q.T., that Jane Russell's
figure ain't what it used to be and that Marilyn
Monroe's much-vaunted shape is as phony as her yearning for the Karamazov
"As far as Jane is concerned,
she is way down from her erstwhile 38 bosom...and Marilyn is about four
inches removed from the 36 they claim for her."
Evelyn is the girl generally
credited with making burlesque bust-conscious. Before, she entered the
strip picture, burlesque movements emphasized a sexy walk with the bumps
and grinds. Relatively little importance had been attached to an eye-stopping
At least one set of 1956 calendars
will bear a nude likeness of Evelyn. The pictures were made by Tom Kelly,
the same photographer who skyrocketed to fame with his nude calendar art
of Marilyn Monroe.
Evelyn has had other troubles
in addition to running afoul of local courts and the Post Office Department.
Back In 1952, she filed suit to recover $5,000 she lent her inventor-boy
friend, Steven Vitko, who, allegedly needed the money to secure a government
contract to build an experimental flying saucer plane. Evelyn charged the
money was not used to build a flying saucer or any other type of plane.
Miss West's interest in nudism
begins the very moment she gets out of bed each morning. "I get up and
the first thing I do is get undressed," she explains. "I don't sleep in
the nude. I sleep in a bra. Most girls today find that very uplifting."