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  • History Friday – A Deep-Dyed Villain

    Posted by Sgt. Mom on 12th April 2013 (All posts by )

    The tree by the Nimitz hotel’s stable gate.

    He really was a black hat, this particular villain; he was known and recognized throughout the district around mid 19th century Fredericksburg and the German settlements in Gillespie County – by a fine, black beaver hat. Which was not furry, as people might tend to picture immediately, but made of felt, felt manufactured from the hair scraped from beaver pelts. This had been the fashion early in the 19th century, and made a fortune for those who sent trappers and mountain-men into the far, far west, hunting and trapping beaver. The fashion changed and the far-west fur trade collapsed, but I imagine that fine hats were still made from beaver felt. And J.P. Waldrip was so well known by his hat that he was buried with it.
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    Posted in History | 5 Comments »

    History Friday – A Deep-Dyed Villain

    Posted by Sgt. Mom on 7th December 2012 (All posts by )


    He really wore a black hat, this particular villain; he was known and recognized throughout the district around Fredericksburg and the German settlements in Gillespie County – by his fine, black beaver hat. Which was not furry, as people might tend to picture immediately – but made of felt, felt manufactured from the hair scraped from beaver pelts. This had been the fashion early in the 19th century, and made a fortune for those who sent trappers and mountain-men into the far, far west, hunting and trapping beaver. The fashion changed – and the far-west fur trade collapsed, but I imagine that fine hats were still made from beaver felt. And J.P. Waldrip was so well-known by his hat that he was buried with it.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in Civil Society, History, Terrorism, War and Peace | 4 Comments »

    Friday Historical Diversion: The Mild, Mild West

    Posted by Sgt. Mom on 24th August 2012 (All posts by )

    Some years ago, I succumbed to the blandishments of the overloaded bookshelves at Half-Price Books. I knew I shouldn’t have wandered into the section housing assortments of ‘Texiana’ but I did and I was tempted. Since I can resist anything but temptation, I gave in and bought a slightly oversized volume (with color plates!) with the gripping title of German Artist on the Texas Frontier: Friedrich Richard Petri for a sum slightly less than the current price on Amazon. Who was Friedrich Richard Petri, you might ask – and rightfully so for chances are practically no one outside of the local area might have heard of him, he finished very few substantial paintings, was only resident in the Hill Country of Texas for about seven years, and died relatively young.

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    Posted in Arts & Letters, Europe, Germany, History, USA | 7 Comments »