After a 65 year run, Henry the Hatter has lost their lease and must close their downtown Detroit location at 1307 Broadway in Detroit. They are the oldest hat retailer in the United States.
Saturday, August 5 will be the final day of business downtown. According to the company:
Henry the Hatter was originally established by Henry Komrofsky who, in 1919, began a partnership with Gustave Newman. Newman became sole owner following Komrofsky’s death in 1941, later selling the company to native New Yorker Seymour (Sy) Wasserman in 1948. Several years later, Wasserman moved Henry the Hatter to its location on Broadway in 1952. Current owner Paul Wasserman, Sy’s son, joined his father in the family business in 1972.
The good news is that their other location in Southfield will remain open. That’s located at 15616 West 10 Mile Road.
“Over the past 124 years, as trends, culture and the economy evolved, we did too. I’m sad to see this era end but it was a business decision I did not make,” said Paul Wasserman. “I encourage everyone, from those who visited the store when they were young to first time shoppers, to visit us at Henry the Hatter and help us say goodbye to a part of Detroit history.”
Some of the notable customers include George Clinton, Jeff Daniels, Mike Epps, Steve Harvey, Kid Rock and Jack White. There’s even a president in there – President Dwight D. Eisenhower wore a Henry the Hatter homburg to his inauguration in 1956.
Henry the Hatter is a part of a historic fashion district in downtown Detroit that has undergone some changes in recent years. Serman’s closed in 2013 after 96 years in business after Dan Gilbert purchased the building.
Hot Sam’s, which opened its doors in 1921, moved years ago to the Compuware Building. And shoe retailer City Slicker moved to a new storefront in a parking garage on Monroe Street a few years ago.
Here are a few more pictures from today, and if you scroll down, some special photos and memorabilia from yesteryear, courtesy of Henry the Hatter.
Old Henry The Hatter Photos & Memorabilia
Below: Henry the Hatter’s first location
An ad from 1944
Gents with hats – below, Gus Newman boxing
Below: Pictures from their 100th Anniversary