Who Were They?

Lost and forgotten photos from the past

Gem Hats 2 W

More fabulous hats

Here is the second page of the wonderful Haberdasher book and just look at these wonderful chapeaux! The one at top right has the look of a top hat, but I believe it might be a high bowler. Frankly, I don’t know much about men’s hats…ladies bonnets, now I could talk for a while on those! I shall have to do some research on these toppers to find out more about them. Anyone who knows more is welcome to comment! Note that while all three hats shown have a dip in the center front, the men each wear their hat to their best advantage, and thereby result in a different bit of flair. Top left looks a bit dour, top right looks formal and lower right looks dapper. Not to be left out, lower left looks very glossy. Hair was handled so very differently by 19th century people than it is today! Hair oil was encouraged so the shiny hair would look healthy. Can you just imagine running your fingers through that hair? I sure can’t. Ick.

Click the images below for a bit more detail.

Gem Hats 2 TL Gem Hats 2 TR Gem Hats 2 BL Gem Hats 2 BR

3 thoughts on “Top hat, bowler hat, slicked hair

  1. Yes, they’re all bowlers, or derbys in America. They came in many different styles, colors and heights. For men, individuality was all in the details! Very nice set of photos. I’d placed them more in the mid 1870s to 1890


  2. IntenseGuy says:

    The first bowler hat was originally created for Edward Coke, the younger brother of the 2nd Earl of Leicester in 1849.

    It was designed by London hatmakers Thomas and William Bowlers for hatters Lock & Co of St James’s.

    The purpose was to create a piece of headgear that could be worn by game keepers when they were out riding to protect their heads from low-hanging branches.


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