Hats and American Men

What do hats tell us about American men?

Felt Hats, Tier Caps, Baseball Caps – Hats are prevalent among specific American men today. Hats probably tell us more about the wearer of the hat than we realize.

In fact, the National Museum of American History notes in its introduction to an online hat display that “a hat is much more than a functional tool to keep the head comfortable. As a symbol of identification, it also reveals a lot about occupation, class. social, cultural heritage and individual style “.

Consider it: George Washington and his tricorne; Abraham Lincoln and also his fireplace. Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders hat. American history was made by men in hats.

For decades and years, a hat on a man resembled a point on an I, a cornerstone on a column, a goatee on a cane. The hat covered everything, both figuratively and actually. Just as he made a statement.

But what do those hats tell us about historic Americans regarding wearers?

Be A Hatter, Not A Hater

The research of the hat, the American “hatology” goes back. Near the end of the 1800s, a hat maker in New York City revealed the tricks of reading the character of an American man by the type of hat he was wearing. According to an account in the Kansas City Gazette of January 31, 1890, the undisclosed hatter described news reporter G.H. Sandison that “practically the whole range of human feelings can be expressed with the hat if one only knows how to do it.”

Men often chose hats to reflect their characters, he said, and not to comply with the most up-to-date trends. “The result is an article that definitely has the merit of individuality at the very least.”

The hatter explained that Senator William Maxwell Evarts of New York City, for example, “never wears a new hat … He buys a 6 3/4 hair beaver with a wide, straight brim and wears it well back in the head. in a supreme way. In any other hat, it would not be William Maxwell Evarts. ”

The hatters of the early 20th century advised that the hair beaver hats, preferred by men and women, be completely dry cleaned.

And prominent New Yorker John Jacob Astor, the anonymous hatter continued, usually donned “a tall hat from a very old classic measuring 17 centimeters in length and with a wide, straight brim that gives the wearer a Quaker look.”

The silk hat worn by former New York City Mayor Abram Hewitt, the hatter noted, had about three terms. Hewitt’s summer season clothing included “a faded white top hat of old and dubious style.”

When a hat ages and also the brim begins to sag, he asserted, “the whole character of the hat changes. The third period normally relegates a hat piece to the ranks of the ‘ha-beens’ and when a man wears such an old heading that it is justifiably classified with the crops. ”

The soft top hat, he announced, “is the hat of men of skill. Just look at how many of our wonderful men wear it. There is Thomas Alva Edison, who was never understood to wear any other type of hat other than a soft blow. “. approximately. He wears a 7 1/4 hat, which is a very large size. “Poet Joaquin Miller, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Henry Ward Beecher, Oscar Wilde, and several other” countless poets, painters, writers, and statesmen affect the soft hat. ” .

Dinner plate

Writing in the 1915 American Hatter magazine, H.H. Manchester noted that hats in America had a long history. In 1662, the Virginia colony used 10 pounds of tobacco for every good wool or fur hat made in the swarm, to advertise the making. The American colonists ended up being so efficient at making hats (10,000 were made each year in New York City and New England alone), the British Parliament passed legislation in the mid-1700s that effectively banned the export of hats. of the New World.

On the other hand, Manchester made up, new hat making procedures were opened in New Jacket, Delaware and Connecticut.

The Star-Journal of Sandusky, Ohio, reported in 1911 that hatters used primarily the fur of rabbits, otters, musquash (the muskrat), and beaver hair.

And also wool. When George Washington’s Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, provided a report to Congress in 1791 on America’s wool industry, hat-making was considered among the radiant places of the economic climate. In addition to a manufacturing record based on the 1860 census, numerous hats were made and offered in the United States.

In 1890, the undisclosed hat dealer said that the soft hat “is the American hat, the national helmet. It fits comfortably on the head and is amazing in the summer and also warm enough in the winter months. In different weights for adapt to the season. For a century it has been the unique brand of male brains. ”

Walt Whitman, he said, was “addicted” to a floppy hat, and “it’s really a fiddling, which works as a hat, fan, and sometimes even a table towel. He has been known to eat dinner from his spacious crown.” .


Over the years, other types of head ornaments, such as bowler hats and also sailor and cowboy hats and also Panama hats, have been in fashion. However, many American men continue to prefer soft hats, such as fedoras, level caps, and baseball caps.

With the exception of the building, operate in hull zones.

The hat an American man chooses to wear tells us something about his personality, and it has for centuries too. But the type of hats your boys choose (adaptable, relaxed, sturdy, no tacks) could also tell us something about the character of this country.

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