Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Shopping in Detroit: Henry the Hatter

Henry the Hatter Flagship Store in Downtown Detroit

Detroit is known for its fashion sense, and "Henry the Hatter" is one of the reasons. Founded in 1893, Henry the Hatter has hats, caps, fedoras, and even fezzes for every age and taste. President Dwight D. Eisenhower wore a hat at his inauguration; ushering in a change by wearing a "homburg" rather than the silk top hat that had been the tradition, signaling a change to a more austere Federal government. At his 1961 inauguration, President John F. Kennedy did not wear a hat at all; and he is "blamed" for the demise of men's hat-wearing in the 1960s and 1970s' although the times seemed to be changing anyway. Today, such luminaries and celebrities as Run-DMC, L.L. Cool J, Kid Rock, and Steve Harvey go to Henry the Hatter for their headwear.

A fedora from Henry the Hatter

Henry the Hatter has survived several changes of ownership, various downturns in the economy, and several location changes in downtown Detroit. In the 1980s, the store focused more on cleaning and repair, as well as custom-made hats. Today, Henry the Hatter is owned by Paul Wasserman and has two other locations in Hamtramck and Southfield Michigan.

A Greek Fisherman Cap

Henry the Hatter has been recognized as a Michigan Centennial Business by the Historical Society of Michigan, and both Paul Wasserman and his father Seymour Wasserman as Hat Retailer of the Year by the Traveling Hat Salesmen Association of America.

Coleman A. Young, Detroit Mayor 1974-1994 in Homburg Hat

Homburg Hat

Henry the Hatter
1307 Broadway
Detroit MI 48226
(313) 962-0970
Hours: Monday - Saturday 9am - 6pm
Shameless Plug: Please read my husband's blog The "D" Spot...

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