"I Love Science" lady really did love science

Dill.jpeg

Earlier this week I posted a modified version of this photo, captioned to say "I Fucking Love Science!" by a poster at I Can Has Cheezburger.

Now, thanks to the Life magazine archives, I can tell you a little about what's really going on in that shot. The photo was taken by Wallace Kirkland in 1954. The original caption that went with the photo read:

Mrs. Jane Dill, four months pregnant, reacts to the news that she is carrying a baby girl, Northbrook, Illinois, 1954. She had just taken a test, administered by the unidentified man in the lab coat, by placing a wafer soaked in a secret formula on her tongue."

I've never heard anything about prenatal gender screening happening this way. And a quick search didn't turn up much, either. Do any of you know anything about this test? What was it looking for? How accurate was it?

Thanks to Benedict and Brian Cosgrove at Life.com!

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