Vintage Photos Show the Real Mad Men

Ivan Dmitri/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Photos by Ivan Dmitri/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

"Mad Men," the sensational AMC series, has captured the imagination of millions of viewers since 2007 when it first aired. Inspired by the real people who worked on New York's Madison Avenue during the 1960s, the show illustrates the golden age of advertising brought about by changes in consumer habits and the rise of television following WWII. In 1958, LIFE Magazine covered the trend, offering a glimpse into the day-to-day of an ad executive. A real-life Don Draper? 

A Madison Avenue advertising executive holds his briefcase and portfolio, walking down the street in New York City. 

Madison Avenue advertising executives work on a project. 

Madison Avenue advertising executives look over an ad with copy that reads, "Breeze through washday."

Inside a Madison Avenue advertising agency. 

Finding time to relax: A Madison Avenue advertising executive on his boat. 

A Madison Avenue advertising executive leaves for work.