Straw sporting hat, c.1890
19th century sports hats are hard to find, because they received heavy use and were then discarded. That is what makes this one a real rarity, a collector's treasure. I was thrilled to find this example. The hat has a strong presence and makes a great display.
The hat is fashioned from brown straw. It has a jaunty, rolled brim lined with burgundy silk. The crown is trimmed with striped silk ribbon. Under the crown lining is a partial paper label that reads "London Finish."
The condition is good and all original. The straw brim has a few nicks; the crown lining is shattered. The crown has a split that has been backed for support, and the ribbon trim has a few splits. I prefer all original hats even with a few blemishes—it is part of the antique charm. All too often an antique hat has been "redecorated."
It measures 19" around the inside of the crown, 12 1/2" from front to back, 10 1/2" across, and 4 1/2" high.