Boss Of The Plains
The original cowboy hat
Historical Hat Replica
4 1/4" Crown
4" Brim w/ Binding
Can be made in sizes: 6 7/8 - 7 3/4
The Boss of The Plains is the first purpose made western, or cowboy hat. Notice the difference in the crown profile of our Boss of The Plains versus that made by others. The sides are more vertical and the top is flatter on ours than that made by other hat makers.
The Story of The Boss of The Plains
John B. Stetson had a hat making background, as his father was a master hat maker back East. John decided to take a trip to the Rockies after the Civil War ended in 1865 and he wore an Eastern City Hat because that was what he had. John B. soon realized that the small brim city hat was not good enough for the extremes of the Great Plains and the Rocky Mountains. So while in the mountains he had access to beaver furs and he decided to make his own hat over the campfire. To form the hat all he had was a pot and a flat iron frying surface, hence the shape. Thicker felt and a wide brim did the trick.
John B. Stetson told of encountering men on the trail back to St. Louis. He reported being offered as much as the price of a colt pistol at that time for his hat. He realized he had something in this new hat. John visited shops in St. Louis and took orders. He then returned East and started his company with $100 and the rest was history.
The original form was a 4" crown and you could order any brim width up to 3 3/4". You could have a curled edge as worn by Marque Dr Moray or most popularly flatas worn by Cheif Joseph. Notice how flat the top of the crown is in those photos. Most Boss of The Plains had the ribbon binding on the edge of the brim but some smaller brims did not.
We scale up our Boss of The Plains 1/4" in crown and brim because we are so much larger today than they were 150 years ago. (Did you know that the maximum weight to be in the cavalry was less than 130 lbs.) By enlarging 1/4" we maintain the proportions and a 4" crown simply won't go down far enough on many peoples heads today. Stetson did change the profile circa 1900 (or so) to a 4 1/2" and more rounded shape. Stetson still has this "block". As far as we know only we make the original profile and we can make it in the 6X felt so it will bear the famous Stetson logo. Or we can go all the way up to 100% beaver in our Knudsen brand.