Margaret Ekdahl – Florida’s first “Miss America”
While there has been much controversy surrounding her title, there was no doubt about the beauty of Margaret Ekdahl. Born in Sweden in 1912, Margaret and her family arrived in Orlando in 1926. Known as “Micky” Miss Ekdahl worked as a hostess at the the Yowell-Drew Department Store’s tea room when not attending school. By the time she was 18 Margaret and her family were living in Tampa and, having won the Miss Tampa beauty pageant she went on to win the honor of representing the State of Florida in a nationwide competition, the Miami National Beauty Contest.
Heralded by national newspapers as the 1930 “Miss America” Miss Ekdahl spent 8 months on a national tour and was offered roles in motion pictures, which she turned down and returned to Orlando to live, and worked at Dickson & Ives on Orange Avenue, until her tragic death at the age of 20! Read more about Margaret Ekdahl’s all too brief life and enjoy seeing collected photos of Florida’s first “Miss America” at www.TampaPix.com/ekdahl.htm