More on "From Eternity Back to Here!":
I just stumbled onto the amazing fact that Kurtzman had a more direct reference in Mad
to the New Senator Hotel, the real-life Honolulu house of prostitution, than James Jones did in From Here to Eternity
. Managed by Ruth Davis at 121 North Hotel Street (see color photo), the New Senator had a lounge area, a bar and rooms in which the female employees could entertain guests. The WWII photo at bottom shows soldiers and sailors waiting in line to enter the New Senator Hotel or other brothels on Hotel Street.
Jones cleverly managed a bit of sexy word play when he fictionalized the New Senator Hotel as the New Congress Hotel in his novel. For the 1954 movie, the name was changed to the New Congress Club (but the sexual meaning of the word "congress" apparently slipped past the censors). During WWII, Kurtzman was stationed in North Carolina, not the Pacific, but he somehow knew enough to devise the name New Senate Club for "From Eternity Back to Here!" Perhaps he learned about the place while doing research for Two-Fisted Tales
and Frontline Combat.
Here's the staff of the New Senator Hotel in 1940...
Also see: "Dousing Honolulu's Red Lights" by Richard Greer.
Labels: honolulu, james jones, kurtzman, new congress club, new congress hotel, new senate club, new senator hotel