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The Green Tree: Highlights from the Collection of the Mutual Assurance Company of Philadelphia - April 2007
 
 
painting
 
Unknown Maker

Philadelphia Hose Company Parade Hat, 1849–1852
Pressed felt, 6 × 13 inches
References: Garvan and Wojtowicz 1977, 131, illus
RS 6324


The Philadelphia Hose Company was founded in 1803. The large numeral “1” painted in a coil of hose on the back of this pressed felt hat signifies that the company was the first organization of its kind in the city. The initials of the hat’s owner, painted on its top, belong to Samuel A. Bridges, a contributing member of the company from August 1849 to July 1852 who briefly served as a director in 1851. This new and more elaborate type of hat was described in the Articles and By-Laws of the Philadelphia Hose Company as revised in July 1834: “a black painted hat, with the name of the Company in gilt, on the front, and the figure (1) encircled by a section of hose.” In 1849 it was further specified that the hat be six inches in height and the brim three inches wide.

  


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