Life was very different in 1941, that’s all I can say.
They’re women of the GOP in Milford, Conneticut, gathering for a party (and posing for LIFE magazine!) in 1941. LIFE reported that “members of the Young Women’s Republican Club of Milford, Conn., explored the pleasures of tobacco, poker, the strip tease and such other masculine enjoyments as had frequently cost them the evening companionship of husbands, sons and brothers.”
They do not, however, explain how this worked out. I like to think that one of them decided to run off and join a burlesque show.