Miss America through the years

+-

A look back at memorable moments from the Miss America pageant, throughout its nearly 100-year history.

Miss America — 1921

Contestants in the first Miss America pageant in
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Contestants in the first Miss America pageant in 1921 line up for the judges in Atlantic City in their swimwear.

Margaret Gorman Cahill poses after being crowned as
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Margaret Gorman Cahill poses after being crowned as the first Miss America at age 16 in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Sept. 14, 1921.

Margaret Gorman, of Washington, D.C., poses after winning
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Margaret Gorman, of Washington, D.C., poses after winning the first Miss America pageant in Atlantic City in September 1921.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE

Miss America — 1922

Miss America beauty contestants on Atlantic City's seafront
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America beauty contestants on Atlantic City's seafront in 1921. The pageant was won by 16-year-old marbles champion Margaret Gorman of Washington, D.C.

Mary Katherine Campbell, 15, holds a scepter as
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Mary Katherine Campbell, 15, holds a scepter as she poses in a regal robe and crown after becoming Miss America 1922 at the second Miss America Pageant. The Columbus native won again in 1923 -- pulling in two synchronized wins.

Miss America — 1926

Norma Smallwood, of Tulsa, Okla., poses in her
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Norma Smallwood, of Tulsa, Okla., poses in her bathing suit with trophies after becoming Miss America on Sept. 11, 1926.

Miss America — 1927

Lois Delander poses in a shiny dress after
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Lois Delander poses in a shiny dress after being crowned Miss America 1927.

Lois Delander holds her Miss America sash over
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Lois Delander holds her Miss America sash over her head after winning the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in 1927.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE

Miss America — 1929

Miss America contestant Ruth Burnham, of Great Lakes,
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America contestant Ruth Burnham, of Great Lakes, poses proudly with her sash on Sept. 9, 1929.

Miss America — 1936

Rose Veronica Coyle, of Philadelphia, Miss America 1936,
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Rose Veronica Coyle, of Philadelphia, Miss America 1936, poses in a bathing suit.

Miss America — 1937

Bette Cooper poses with her trophy after being
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Bette Cooper poses with her trophy after being crowned Miss America in 1937.

Marilyn Meseke, of Marion, Ohio, poses with other
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Marilyn Meseke, of Marion, Ohio, poses with other winners after she was awarded the Miss America position on Sept. 10, 1938.

Detroit's Patricia Donnelly, Miss America 1939, crowns Philadelphia's
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Detroit's Patricia Donnelly, Miss America 1939, crowns Philadelphia's Frances Marie Burke as Miss America on Sept. 7, 1940.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE

Miss America — 1943

Jean Bartel, of Los Angeles, was crowned Miss
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Jean Bartel, of Los Angeles, was crowned Miss America in 1943.

Miss America — 1945

Miss America contestant Peggy Harden Payne poses at
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America contestant Peggy Harden Payne poses at the New Yorker Hotel on Aug. 24, 1945. Bess Myerson of New York won the pageant that year, according to the Miss America website.

Miss America Bess Myerson, of New York City,
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America Bess Myerson, of New York City, on a float during the victory parade in Atlantic City on Sept. 2, 1945.

Miss America contestants on the boardwalk in Atlantic
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America contestants on the boardwalk in Atlantic City on Sept. 4, 1945.

Miss America — 1950

Yolande Betbeze, of Mobile, Alaska, walks on the
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Yolande Betbeze, of Mobile, Alaska, walks on the runway after she is crowned Miss America 1951 in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Sept. 9, 1950.

Miss America 1951 Yolande Betbeze of Mobile, Ala.,
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America 1951 Yolande Betbeze of Mobile, Ala., waves after winning the title. (Sept. 10, 1950)

Miss America — 1954

Ten finalists in the Miss America pageant line
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Ten finalists in the Miss America pageant line up on stage on Sept. 11, 1954.

Miss America Lynda Lee Mead of Natchez, Missouri,
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America Lynda Lee Mead of Natchez, Missouri, takes the stage during the swimsuit competition at the pageant in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Sept. 13, 1959.

Miss America — 1968

Debra Dene Barnes, of Pittsburg, Kan., poses on
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Debra Dene Barnes, of Pittsburg, Kan., poses on the throne after being crowned Miss America 1968 in Atlantic City on Sept. 9, 1968.

Miss America — 1969

Ten semifinalists of the Miss America pageant pose
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Ten semifinalists of the Miss America pageant pose in their swimsuits in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on Sept. 6, 1969.

The new Miss America of 1970, Pamela Anne
(Credit: The Associated Press)

The new Miss America of 1970, Pamela Anne Eldred of Michigan, poses with her court in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on Sept. 6, 1969.

Saundra Williams, 19, center, of Philadelphia, was crowned
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Saundra Williams, 19, center, of Philadelphia, was crowned Miss Black America 1969 at ceremonies in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on Sept. 8, 1969. It wasn't until 1984 that an African American contestant won the Miss America crown.

Miss America — 1970

Miss America 1971, Phyllis George, is crowned by
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America 1971, Phyllis George, is crowned by former Miss America Pamela Anne Eldred on Sept. 12, 1970.

Miss America 1976 Tawny Elaine Godin, of Saratoga
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America 1976 Tawny Elaine Godin, of Saratoga Springs, is crowned by Miss America 1975 Shirley Cothran on Sept. 7, 1975.

Miss America Phyllis George, of Denton, Texas, is
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America Phyllis George, of Denton, Texas, is a bit shaken as she holds her crown -- which slipped off her head and bounced on the walkway. This photo was taken Sept. 12, 1970.

Miss America — 1980

Miss America 1981 Susan Powell, of Oklahoma, is
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Miss America 1981 Susan Powell, of Oklahoma, is crowned at the pageant in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on Sept. 6, 1980.

Miss America — 1983

Vanessa Williams during her coronation walk after being
(Credit: The Associated Press)

Vanessa Williams during her coronation walk after being crowned Miss America 1984. The photo was taken Sept. 17, 1983.

Miss America 1984 contestants, including Vanessa Williams, pose
(Credit: AP)

Miss America 1984 contestants, including Vanessa Williams, pose on the beach in Atlantic City. (Sept. 12, 1983)

Three Miss America contestants, including Vanessa Williams, run
(Credit: AP)

Three Miss America contestants, including Vanessa Williams, run in Atlantic City's surf. (Sept. 13, 1983)

Packages of Kellogg's Corn Flakes featured Miss America
(Credit: 1984)

Packages of Kellogg's Corn Flakes featured Miss America Vanessa Williams in 1984.

Vanessa Williams is crowned Miss America 1984 in
(Credit: AP)

Vanessa Williams is crowned Miss America 1984 in Atlantic City. (Sept. 17, 1983)

Vanessa Williams, Miss America 1984, jumps for photographers
(Credit: AP)

Vanessa Williams, Miss America 1984, jumps for photographers on the beach in Atlantic City. She is the first black Miss America in the pageant's history. (Sept. 19, 1983)

Susan Akin, of Meridian, Miss., is crowned Miss
(Credit: AP)

Susan Akin, of Meridian, Miss., is crowned Miss America 1986. (Sept. 14, 1985)

Miss America 1997 Tara Dawn Holland, of Kansas,
(Credit: AP)

Miss America 1997 Tara Dawn Holland, of Kansas, is crowned by former Miss America Shawntel Smith at the pageant in Atlantic City. (Sept. 14, 1996)

Thirteen of the fifty-one Miss America contestants stand
(Credit: AP)

Thirteen of the fifty-one Miss America contestants stand in front of a mural of Atlantic City and wave to the crowd that gathered outside the Atlantic City International Airport as they arrived for the 77th annual pageant. (Sept. 1, 1997)

Miss Kentucky Heather Renee French, right, reacts after
(Credit: AP)

Miss Kentucky Heather Renee French, right, reacts after she realizes she has become Miss America 2000 during the pageant at the Atlantic City Convention Hall. (Sept. 18, 1999)

Miss Florida Ericka Dunlap, left, reacts after being
(Credit: AP)

Miss Florida Ericka Dunlap, left, reacts after being named Miss America 2004. (Sept. 20, 2003)

Miss America 2004 Ericka Dunlap crowns Miss America
(Credit: AP)

Miss America 2004 Ericka Dunlap crowns Miss America 2005, Deidre Downs, during the Miss America competition in Atlantic City, N.J. (Sept. 18, 2004)

Miss Oklahoma, Jennifer Berry, is crowned Miss America
(Credit: AP)

Miss Oklahoma, Jennifer Berry, is crowned Miss America 2006 by outgoing Miss America 2005 Deidre Downs at the Miss America pageant in Las Vegas. (Jan. 21, 2006)

Miss Oklahoma, Lauren Nelson, is crowned Miss America
(Credit: AP)

Miss Oklahoma, Lauren Nelson, is crowned Miss America 2007 by Miss America 2006 Jennifer Berry at the Miss America pageant in Las Vegas. (Jan. 29, 2007)

Kirsten Haglund celebrates after being crowned Miss America
(Credit: AP)

Kirsten Haglund celebrates after being crowned Miss America 2008 during the Miss America Pageant at the Planet Hollywood hotel and casino in Las Vegas. (Jan. 26, 2008)

Miss Indiana Katie Stam is crowned Miss America
(Credit: AP/Las Vegas News Bureau)

Miss Indiana Katie Stam is crowned Miss America 2009 by Miss America 2008 Kirsten Haglund in Las Vegas. (Jan. 24, 2009)

Miss America 2010 Caressa Cameron of Virginia appears
(Credit: Getty Images)

Miss America 2010 Caressa Cameron of Virginia appears for a meet and greet at DSW Union Square in Manhattan. (Feb. 2, 2010)

Miss America 2011 Teresa Scanlan visits
(Credit: Getty Images)

Miss America 2011 Teresa Scanlan visits "Fox & Friends" at FOX Studios in Manhattan. (Jan. 17, 2011)

Laura Kaeppeler, Miss Wisconsin, poses during a news
(Credit: Getty Images)

Laura Kaeppeler, Miss Wisconsin, poses during a news conference after she was named the new Miss America during the 2012 Miss America Pageant at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Jan. 14, 2012)

2013 Miss America Mallory Hagan sings the national
(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

2013 Miss America Mallory Hagan sings the national anthem before a game between the Nets and the Miami Heat at Barclays Center. (Jan. 30, 2013)

Subscribe to the Entertainment newsletter

Sign up

By clicking Sign up, you agree to our privacy policy.

Comments

Newsday.com now uses Facebook for our comment boards. Please read our guidelines and connect your Facebook account to comment.

By using this site, you agree to our Privacy policy.

OK