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In 1814, French Magician Louis Comte Was The First To Pull A Rabbit From A Top Hat

Hang on to your hats and celebrate in style on January 15.   Millions will participate in National Hat Day.

  • In the Middle Ages, hats were an indicator of social status.
  • In the military, hats may denote one’s nationality, branch of service, rank and/or regiment.
  • A Thebes tomb painting depicts one of the first pictorials of a hat.  The painting shows a man wearing a conical straw hat.
  • Structured hats for women began to be worn in the late 16th century.
  • Millinery is the designing and manufacture of hats.
  • The term “milliner” derived from the city of Milan, Italy.  The best quality hats were made in Milan in the 18th century.
  • Millinery began as traditionally a woman’s occupation, as the milliner not only created hats and bonnets but also chose lace, trim and accessories to complete an outfit.
  • In the middle of the 1920s, to replace the bonnets and wide-brimmed hats, women began to wear smaller hats that hugged their heads.
  • London black taxies are made tall so that a gentleman can ride in them without taking off a top hat.
  • In the middle of 19th century baseball umpires wore top hats during the game.
  • White tall chef hats traditionally have 100 pleats to represent hundreds of ways an egg can be prepared. They were invented by cuisine inventors Marie-Antoine Carème and Auguste Escoffier as a method of establishing hierarchy in the kitchen.
  • Elisabeth I had a law according to which every person older than 7 years had to wear a cap on Sundays and holydays.
  • Process of making felt involved the use of mercury, which is toxic and prolonged exposure use can cause damage in nervous system, tremors and dementia. From that originates phrase “Mad as a hatter”.
  • In 1920s there was an odd custom in America that it was common that if people wore straw hats after the 15 September they were beaten up.
  • First “Dunce” hat was introduced by medieval theologian John Duns Scotus (1265-1308). HIs idea was that a conical hat funneled knowledge from God into a head of the… dunce.
  • Panama hats were never made in Panama.They’re made in Equador.
  • Those who supply men’s hats are called hatters while those who supply women’s hats are called milliners.
  • In 1814, French Magician Louis Comte was the first to pull a rabbit from a top hat
  • There is a law in Wyoming that prohibits wearing of a hat that obstructs a view in a theater or some other place of amusement.
  • In Fargo, North Dakota, There is a law that forbids dancing while wearing a hat under the penalty of jail.
  • There is still a law in Kentucky that forbids a ma to buy a ten gallon hat if his wife is not present to assist in choosing a model.
  • A 1911 Popular Mechanics marveled over a new invention, an electric fan built for use inside of top hats. Flipped on with a switch at the brim, the fan “keeps head cool in hot weather.” The battery was built to last for several days of cooling, and replacements were only 15 cents a pop (that’s a little under $4 today).
  • Men’s hats were taxed in the UK from 1784-1811. The tax payable depended on the price of the hat.
  • Every man’s hat had to have a revenue stamp pasted inside on its lining. Forging hat-tax revenue stamps was punishable by death.
  • The first bowler hat was bought on December 17, 1849 by William Coke for 10 shillings. It was made by Thomas Bowler.
  • 20% of your body heat is lost from your head which is why babies are encouraged to wear them outdoors on cold days
  • Baseball Umpires used to wear Top Hats in the 1850’s.


National Day Calendar

Mental Floss

History of Hats


Fact Buddies


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