Friday, September 3, 2010

Keep Your Hat On!

This hat elastic references a patent from Dec of 1940 by John W W Holden of Providence, RI.  It was not the elastic he patented, but the metal gadget that attached to the hat.  If you have looked at pictures from this era you will see that ladies wore their hats at extreme angles on their heads and were probably glad to have a helpful item like this.  It replaced these,

which were not much good without masses of hair to anchor them in.  They were still used in a shortened form, however, along with bobby pins and combs.

Ladies were starting to wear their long hair in a roll from temple to temple around their heads, and Mr Holden was well aware of this.  He invented an imitation horsehair roll in 1937 in several diameters to roll the hair around.
In 1941 he was still inventing hair rolls.
Like most of the other inventors I have featured, Mr Holden was prolific.  In 1928 he was interested in bead necklaces and the problems of them coming unstrung.  In 1933 he was concerned with how far a fisherman could cast a line and know the length of his cast, and was pitching his idea to Ashaway Line and Twine Manufacturing Co of Ashaway, RI.  The 1930 census reveals he was 41 years old, born in Massachusetts of English parents, got married at age 25, and he and wife, Grace had no children.  He was a jewelry jobber, which explains his interest in necklaces.

I found this current listing:
John W.W. Holden Inc.
Private Company, Headquarters Location .. Providence, RI .. (401) 944-1515 .. Wholesale: Medical, Dental, and Optical Supplies

So it looks like Mr Holden was successful with his inventing.

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