Woman's Ostrich Feather Hat

Description
Dating from 1910-1912, this woman's hat is trimmed with ostrich plumes. At the end of the nineteenth century, there was an ever increasing demand by hat makers for plumes, especially ostrich, to decorate women's millinery. With new legislative restrictions on hunting wild birds for fashion, ostrich farming became a successful enterprise in California, Arizona, Texas, Arkansas, and Florida in the 1880s so that feathers could be clipped from the farmed birds to satisfy the American demands for hat making using ostrich feathers.
This hat is made of ivory silk and trimmed with plumes of a pale ivory shade. The underside of the hat brim is covered with black silk velvet. The ostrich plumes were extended by tying on barbs cut from other ostrich plumes. It measures 8.9 inches by 18.3 inches by 15.9 inches overall.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
hat
Date made
1910-1912
Physical Description
silk (part material)
feathers (part material)
Measurements
overall: 225 mm x 465 mm x 405 mm; 8 7/8 in x 18 5/16 in x 15 15/16 in
ID Number
1972.299884.008
accession number
299884
catalog number
299884.8
subject
Feathers
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Costume
National Treasures exhibit
Clothing & Accessories
Government, Politics, and Reform
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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