Very Rare Original Confederate Beehive Style Hat with 1840s Eagle Shako Pin
Very Rare Original Confederate Beehive Style Hat with 1840s Eagle Shako Pin – This extremely rare hat surfaced in Missouri recently. It is composed of tubes of rolled wool, sewn together in a style reminiscent of cotton rag rugs of the period. It seemingly never had either a sweatband or bound brim. It is folded, apparently as always, up on one side, and held in this position by a U.S. c. 1840s shako eagle, backed with lead, with a stick pin like device embedded in the lead. Upon initial inspection and cleaning (the hat, although in overall very good condition, was extremely dirty and replete with insect remains, animal hair and strands of hay), the eagle pin was removed and examined. It became quite apparent that the eagle device had been in its current position for many, many years, as the upper fourth of each wing tip, exhibits an oxidized, age patina, commensurate with exposure just above the line of the brim, where the wing tips were exposed to the air. SOLD
Research revealed that at least one, or more, of Gen. John Hunt Morgan’s men, captured and incarcerated at Camp Douglas, Ill., during the war, wore this exact style of hat, as revealed in period images of these prisoners of war. In addition, one of Gen. R.E. Lee’s slouch hats, currently in the collection of Stratford Hall, is a very similar style of hat.
Needless to say, these Confederate beehive hats have been and remain a great rarity today, in any condition. This hat remains in strong, highly displayable condition and literally speaks volumes about the Confederate enlisted man.