September 13, 2022 is the 100th Anniversary of The Straw Hat Riots. Yes, you read that right.
In 1922, New York City came to a standstill over the straw boater hat.
The Straw Hat Riots occurred throughout New York City’s streets and lasted for three days as thousands of boys attacked men wearing straw hats. What? Why?
Well, in 1922, most men wore straw hats during the summer months. But similar to the “Don’t wear white pants after Labor Day” rule, men had to put away their straw hats by September 15th. If they continued to wear their summer hats afterward, others felt free to knock their hats off and stomp on them. Savage, right? But somehow, this was a common and accepted practice.
In New York City, things got out on September 13, 1922. Mobs of boys traveled the city wielding nail studded clubs, grabbing straw hats off the heads of men and leaving the gutters filled with thousands of smashed Boater Hats. Police tried to curb the violence, but nothing helped and it took 3 days for the riots to calm down.
Fun Fact — The Headwear Association was founded fourteen years prior to the Straw Hat Riots. Wonder if any of our founding members had their hats stomped on this fateful day?