Hatless Jack: The President, the Fedora, and the History of an American Style

Front Cover
Granta Books, 2005 - Hats - 342 pages
John F. Kennedy was the first American president to go bareheaded and he ruined the hat business. Or so it is popularly believed. In Hatless Jack, Neil Steinberg examines why Kennedy was so reluctant to wear a hat in public - was it really because Khrushchev always did? He charts the attempts of the hat-makers of America to persuade their new, charismatic leader to save their declining industry. Along the way, he uncovers the now nearly-forgotten rituals of hat-wearing, with hat-check girls, straw-hat riots and ways of stopping the wind from blowing your hat off. Hats were tipped, raised, checked, waved and eaten (metaphorically, at least) and then they disappeared for ever. Hatless Jack is a fascinating and funny explanation of why hats went and what we all lost when they did.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.



10 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2005)

Neil Steinberg is a columnist for the "Chicago Sun-Times", where he has been on staff since 1987. He is the author of seven books, including" Drunkard: A Hard-Drinking Life" and "Hatless Jack: The President, the Fedora, and the History of American Style".

Bibliographic information