Friday, October 10, 2008

How to make a Printer's Hat

I am now thoroughly convinced you can search and find anything on the Internet- even instructions for making a printer's paper hat.

A couple of entries ago, I mentioned that my brother and I, when we were kids, had a quick tour of Dad's workplace at the Washington (DC) Evening Star. Dad was a Linotype operator. I noticed that all the surfaces in the room were black and greasy and there was the omnipresent odor of ink in the air. One could almost see a mist of black ink everywhere. A distinction of every man in the room was that he wore a paper hat so that the ink mist would not coat his hair- whether he had any hair or not. The hats were almost a mark of honor among the union printers.

My father had long ago made a printer's hat for me and taught be how to make one for myself. I had forgotten how to do it, and until I created the recent entry for this blog, I didn't really care. However, I now realized that Printer's Hats are part of my heritage and I had to find someone to teach me again how to make them. But, newspaper companies do not use Linotype machines or operators anymore and most of my father's co-workers have probably past away. So, after some consternation, I turned hopefully, but doubtfully, to a search engine on the Internet and typed, "printer hat". And lo and behold, up came a website called "instructables" that showed how to make any hat there ever was out of newspaper. How about a Pope's miter hat?

I downloaded a pdf file for making a printer's hat and now my heritage has been restored. If you're interested go to:!/

Go to my previous entries for our trip to The Evening Star and Linotype machines. At the former link you can also compare the fashion model above with the same at a much younger and innocent age. It's no wonder I had forgotten.


TK said...

Hey, Bob, I enjoyed this post!

Also, don't know how I missed your profile the first time I stopped by here, but I'm rollin' on the floor now.

Unknown said...

Also the paper hat meant that the printers could wipe ink off their fingers by just reaching up and rubbing them on the hat.
Very handy and good for doing dirty work at home.

Paul Hirsch said...

Bob, I was thinking the same thing about the internet when I googled "printers hat" and immediately got here! I used to drink in a bar (circa 1970)on Main St , Buffalo, and early in the morning the printers from the Buffalo News used to come across the street for a snort, wearing these cool, paper hats.