WAY BACK WHEN - 100 Years Ago Today - On August 8, 1918, the local paper ran this headline: "Four Southern Men Swim in B.V.D.s." The swimmers from LA, "were charged with drinking on the beach and bathing in their B.V.D.s. According to police, the four men were intoxicated when arrested, and a quart bottle of whisky was found buried in the sand near where they staged their party … the four men were having a hilarious time at the foot of Santa Barbara Street, splashing about in the surf in costumes that no self-respecting censor would pass … The men were released on a bail … and departed for Los Angeles vowing never to return."
It's interesting that the brand name BVD is still used today as a synonym for men's unmentionables. The company Bradley, Voorhees & Day began back in 1876. One of their early slogans was, "Next to Myself I Like BVD Best." [This and other fun stories will be included in "Way Back When: Santa Barbara in 1918" due out this fall.]