Before Hugh Hefner was the King of Classy Smut, he was an American soldier in World War II. He was honorably discharged in 1946 after two years of service and went back to Chicago, where, according to every book and article under the sun about Hef, he tried to reclaim his high school glory days. He went to college; married his first wife, Millie; began having children; and got his career underway with a copywriting job at Esquire’s Chicago office. When Esquire magazine moved its operations to New York, in 1952, Hef asked for a $5 raise, and, when he was denied, refused to move with the company to the Big Apple. In late December of 1952, Hugh Hefner found himself unhappily married, without a job, and on a career path he didn’t want anyway. And that’s when the idea for Playboy struck.