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The Mode in Hats and Headdress

Mojave Jack

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by R. Turner Wilcox, 1945

A co-worker brought me a gift today, gleaned from a library sale. Knowing my interest in hats, he picked it up for a song (though he won't tell me exactly how much!), and what an amazing find! It covers hats and hair styles from the Egyptians to the end of WWII in a heavily illustrated 332 pages. Though it deals with hats, there are probably three to one illustrations of ladies hats and hairstyles to men's. I suppose I should cross-post this in the Powder Room, but it does say, "No peeking Guys!" after all.

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These are pretty big scans, so I'll break it up a bit. I've only scanned in a few pages, but grabbed some that are of most interest here.
 

Mojave Jack

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It's an interesting footnote, too, that there is a disclaimer on the copyright page stating that "This book is manufactured under wartime conditions in conformity with all government regulations controlling the use of paper and other materials."

The pages are bit thin, as you can tell from some of the bleed through on the scans, so it is amazing that it survived as long as it did in an amazing condition.
 

Cigarband

A-List Customer
"The soft brim hat with snap brim for Golf, country, and seashore wear, the "handkerchief felt" it was called, made lightweight and paper thin, it's great advantage being that it could be rolled and packed in a suitcase."

WOW. Any FLer out there with one of these. I've never seen a snap brim this soft.
 

Mojave Jack

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Yucca Valley, California
KeyGrip said:
That's very interesting. Printed in 1945 and I can't find the word "fedora" anywhere in the illustrations or the text.
Actually, that reflects the random nature of my scans more than anything, and a relatively poor choice of examples, I guess! I grabbed the first pages of a couple of the chapters that most reflect the interests here, but that skipped a lot of important information in earlier chapters. Here's a few mentions from earlier periods.

The first mention of a fedora comes in the 1880-1890 chapter, and states that, "The soft felt of Tyrolese orgin later called the Homburg, after the place of its manufacture, was being worn more universally. Other names for the hat were the Alpine and the fedora, the latter the name of the herione "Fedora" in Sardou's drama produced in Paris in 1882" (p. 254).

The next mention is in the 1890-1900 chapter, which states that "By the 'nineties, the fedora had acquired British styling and royal prestige in being worn by the Prince of Wales, later Edward VII of England, from 1901 to 1910. Photographs show him wearing the hat at Bad Homburg. The hat was manufactured at Homburg, hence its name. In one picture, he wears a white felt with white ribbon and ribbon-bound edge" (p. 264-5).

The 1910-1920 chapter notes that "The principal daily hats were the derby and the fedora or Homburg. Black was the general color of the derby with brown the choice of the 'fancy dresser.' City men wore the black Homburg, changing to gray in summer but the fastidious man changed to his straw hat, the boater or the panama, definitely in the month of May" (p. 274-5).

So let's change out those felts for straw, gents, lest you be thought less than fastidious!
 

carldelo

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Great find

That's a great gift. On the off chance I might find something, I typed the title into the used/out of print searcher at Barnes and Noble online. Lo and behold, the title was reproduced as a Dover paperback in 2008! It's in stock at $16.95 direct from Dover, or there were many used copies available, although not at much of a discount. I love Dover for reproducing old scholarship like this - I have many old science texts at low price thanks to them. Here's the link to the reproduction, although it would be great to have an original edition like yours.

http://store.doverpublications.com/0486467627.html

Cheers, Carl

PS they have another publication 'Hats: A History of Fashion in Headwear' by Hilda Amphlett with 800 drawings, sounds interesting also.

PPS I missed it in my original search - there were a bunch of copies of the original text available from various sellers priced from $60-195, so I think your friend did well...
 

Vintage Betty

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California, USA
I've had that book for over 25 years. It's one of my favorite books in my fashion book collection. Somewhere else on the Lounge I mention it...nice friend!
 
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