Tag Archives: hats

Millinery 1909 — The Merry Widow The Mushroom

Millinery 1909 — The Merry Widow The Mushroom
The Lanark Era
Lanark, Ontario, Canada
05 Oct 1904, Wed  •  Page 1
Marion Umpherson Prentice in front of her shop.

It is easy for one to sit behind the plate glass and make mind bets on the success of the millinery openings. Some deductions are obvious. The ladies and bachelors seem to get the greatest pleasure from the occasion. In fact the particular position which’ each person occupies in the social structure of the town is portrayed in their attitude on those exciting epochs .

Merry Widow Hat

When the fashion bonded public for the first time this Spring we wonder whether the Merry Widow or the Charlotte Corday, or some new favourite is to occupy the highest places for the present. The fluttering excitement of the maiden, the self poise of the matron, veteran of many campaigns, the cynical smile of the bachelor, society’s excess baggage and the thinly-veiled uneasiness of the heads of families—all pass in review before us. Judging from appearance hats are going to be very amicably worn.

Charlotte Corday Hat

The extreme horizon of the Happy World has been more or less contracted—so much so in fact that it will scarcely be necessary for ordinary men to carry a package of court plaster tor the purpose of repairing their damaged features in future. There is a new , favourite: “ The Mushroom.” It does not resemble the common or garden vegetable much, except in the name. It may be that the title was derived from the fact that with one of them in the house there isn’t “mushroom” for anything else.

The Mushroom Hat

Some people like to try on hats, some people don’t. It depends a good deal on how they look, but the ones who do not feel quite satisfied have the satisfaction of knowing; that they didn’t have their hair fixed right. Let it be understood that while the fans of the immediate future seem to a tenderfoot, to have shrunk slightly, there is still sufficient to them to prevent the summer’s sun making freckles on the end of the nose.

March 1909 Lanark Era

  • The fashion designer Lucile had designed the original widow hat for an operetta in 1907, but it influenced hat fashions for many more years.  
  • The Merry Widow hat was always black and encased in filmy chiffon or organdie and festooned in feathers.

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
22 Jul 1912, Mon  •  Page 2
The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Sat, Sep 24, 1904 · Page 4
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
07 Apr 1949, Thu  •  Page 7
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
02 Nov 1935, Sat  •  Page 18
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
07 Oct 1899, Sat  •  Page 6
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
13 Aug 1901, Tue  •  Page 2

Hats, Ogilvy’s and Gaudy Teenage Years — Noreen Tyers

Local Women Wearing Hats– Photos Chica Boom Chica Boom

Mad For Hats!! Doris Blackburn’s Hat

Effie McCallum —– Missing Milliner

Mrs. James Prentice Hatmaker Milliner of Lanark

Mad For Hats!! Doris Blackburn’s Hat

Wearing Vintage Hats – Blowing the Lid off Katherine Newton

Bertha Schwerdtfeger — Mother of the Carleton Place Schwerdtfeger Sisters

Mad as a Hatter — Wearing Vintage Hats

Electrical Plugs — Hats– and Impressive Men – Putting on the Ritz in Almonte

Pour some Feathers on Me

Weird Wendell’s Paperback Writers

The Mayhew Sisters Business Women of Carleton Place — Schwerdtfeger Genealogy

The Mayhew Sisters Business Women of Carleton Place — Schwerdtfeger Genealogy

Miss Bertha Mayhew ran her own millinery shop on the main street of Carleton Place in the late 1800’s. She had learned the trade from her older sisters who ran “The Misses Mayhew” hat and dress shop in Pakenham.

After falling in love with and marrying the shopkeeper next door, barber and tobacconist Henry Schwerdtfeger, she closed her shop and Henry took over the entire main floor for his businesses. The couple continued to live upstairs with their daughters Gladys and Hazel before buying a large red brick home on Lake Avenue West. 

Bertha continued to work out of her home, and years later, when daughter Hazel died in 1988, executors discovered boxes and boxes of hats and millinery supplies in the attic. Many taxidermy birds, lace, netting, beadwork, chenille flowers and buttons are still in their original packaging. With great foresight, this collection was donated to the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum by the Hazel Schwerdtfeger Estate. Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum 2014

Miss M. A. Mayhew, who has been in poor health for several months, passed away somewhat unexpectedly Monday afternoon. Her trouble was a heart failure. Miss Mayhew was a daughter of the late Ephriam Mayhew of Athens, Ont., and was 65 years of age. She came to Carleton Place with her sister Sophia in 1879, the two embarking in business here as milliners and dressmakers. Sophia died in 1887, and Adeline continued the business until three years ago, when she retired. They were successful, and built the block known by their name on Bridge street. May 8th 1903 Almonte Gazette

As Good as New and Good Food Company now on Bridge Street-

Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Bertha Mayhew was 20 years younger than her sister Mary Adeline and 23 years younger than her sister Sophia. In 1879 the sisters moved to Carleton Place from Pakenham and set up shop on Bridge Street, as noted in the Carleton Place Directory listing: “Mayhew, Miss Adeline (S. & A. Mayhew)”. ((Sophia and Mary Adeline)

In the late 1800’s Bertha ( Bertie) Opa Mayhew of Carleton Place,Ontario was running her sister’s milliner on Bridge Street right next to dashing Henry Schwerdtfeger who ran the local tobacco store. The two sisters had been listed as Milliners & Dressmakers in Pakenham, Ontario, but it looks like the oldest Mary Adeline came to Carleton Place and set up the business first.

Sophia was listed as living in Pakenham and spending most of her time in Carleton Place. read-Before the Schwerdtfeger Sisters – There was Aunt Sophia

Bertha O Mayhew
10 August 1865
5 November 1939-

Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Bertha Mayhew
Marriage Date:
29 Jan 1890
Marriage Place:
Canada, Carleton Place, Ontario–

Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Bertha looks like she was a late child of the Mayhew family and was sent to live with her sister in Carleton Place and learn the business. Mary Adeline owned the building with Sophia and as the sisters died off it was gradually passed down to Bertha upon the death of Mary in 1903. Henry Schwerdtfeger ran the local tobacco store where the Good Food Co was and after he married her, she closed down the business and expanded his tobacco business in there and likely took care of her affairs which included being the proprietor of the building. The Schwerdtfeger ‘s had two daughters: Hazel and Gladys.


In the 1891 census the newlyweds are living with Mary and I imagine they were still all living together until Mary died.

Mary A Mayhew52Head
Henry A Schmondfeger27Lodger
Bertha Schmondfeger27Lodger

After their parents Henry and Bertha died, sisters Hazel and Gladysl, (who never married) lived together in the old family home on Lake Ave West. Hazel became a registered nurse and the sisters lovingly kept all their mother’s millinery sundries and later donated the collection to the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum. A large portion of Hazel’s estate was willed to the Victorian Order of Nurses in Carleton Place, and as a tribute, the former V.O.N. building on Campbell Street was named Hazel House with a portrait  of her and her sister hung in the foyer

Patti LennoxThe VON building was built because of a generous bequest from the Schwerdtfeger sisters. Until the building sold last year, their pictures (along with a plaque commemorating the building opening) hung in our reception area.

Henry Schwerdtfeger had left his daughters a monthly stipend, but as the cost of living got higher it just was not enough to live on. Once in awhile when money ran low they used to go buy furniture at Home Hardware on their late fathers account and then return the merchandise for cash the next day. No one ever said anything about their habits as they were extremely loyal customers.

According to the late resident Carmen Lalonde who worked for EADES Home Hardware on Bridge Street; he remembered the two sisters very well. Some considered the two quite odd, with one sister always leading the way at a quick gait, and the other one huffing and puffing behind her.

One summer day a man attempted to enter the Schwerdtfeger sisters home through a basement window and alarmed the sisters. Soon the locking of doors and windows became routine, and when repairmen entered they found themselves locked inside the house with the sisters until the job was done. The daughters of milliner Bertha Mayhew Schwerdtfeger will always be fondly known by their pillbox hats–one wore red, and the other one blue.

Gladys and Hazel Schwerdtfeger at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Riverside Heights (1972)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is genea.jpeg

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 28e29769-fb74-4dde-8530-cec9c1b3080a.jpg
Henry Norman Schwerdtfeger 
Bertha Mayhew 
Gladys Adeline Schwerdtfeger 
Hazel Mae Schwerdtfeger 

United (Pine Grove, Maple Wood, St. Fillan’s), Lanark, Ontario

Name:Bertha Schwerdtfeger
Birth Date:10 Aug 1865
Death Date:5 Nov 1939
Cemetery:United Cemeteries
Burial or Cremation Place:Beckwith, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada
Has Bio?:N
Spouse:Henry Norman Schwerdtfeger
Children:Infant Son SchwerdtfegerGladys Adeline SchwerdtfegerHazel Mae Schwerdtfeger
Name:Bertha Mayhew
Origin:Scottish (Scotish)
Birth Date:1864
Birth Place:Ontario
Residence Place:Pakenham, Lanark North, Ontario
District Number:80
Neighbours:View others on page
Household MembersAgeSophia Mayhew30Adeline Mayhew27Walter Mayhew17Bertha Mayhew7

1871 Census

1911 Census

Name:Bertha Schwerdfeger[Bertha Schwerdtfeger]
Racial or Tribal Origin:Canadian
Marital Status:Married
Birth Year:abt 1865
Birth Place:Ontario
Residence Date:1 Jun 1921
House Number:90
Residence Street or Township:Lake Ave
Residence City, Town or Village:Town of Carleton Place
Residence District:Lanark
Residence Province or Territory:OntarioOntario
Residence Country:Canada
Relation to Head of House:Wife
Spouse’s Name:Henry Schwerdfeger
Father Birth Place:Ontario
Mother Birth Place:Ontario
Can Speak English?:Yes
Can Speak French?:No
Can Read?:Yes
Can Write?:Yes
Municipality:Carleton Place
Enumeration District:97
Sub-District:Carleton Place (Town)
Sub-District Number:51
Enumerator:Norman Williamson
District Description:Polling Division No. 6 – Comprising that part of the town south of the 12th concession line and west of Rochester street and Franktown Road
Neighbours:View others on page
Line Number:10
Family Number:92
Household MembersAgeRelationshipHenry Schwerdfeger56HeadBertha Schwerdfeger56WifeGladys Schwerdfeger19DaughterHazel Schwerdfeger17Daughter

Mayhew family


Inscription: [Edit]
In Memory Of
Ephraim Mayhew
Who Died
Nov. 19, 1884
at 77 Years

In Memory Of
Polly Middleton
Wife Of
Ephraim Mayhew
Who Died
Feb. 12, 1869
at 59 Years.

In Memory Of
Mary Adeline Mayhew
Who Died
May 4, 1903
At 55 Years.

In Memory Of
Sophia Mayhew
Who Died
June 13, 1887
At 54 Years,
5 Mon. & 9 Da.

Gravesite Details This Stone is in it’s own fenced in Plot on the Eastern side of the Lyndhurst (Abandoned) Cemetery.

Lyndhurst CemeteryLyndhurst, Leeds and Grenville United Counties, Ontario, Canada

Name:Mary A Mahen[Mary A Mayhew]
Marital Status:Single
Birth Year:abt 1839
Birth Place:United States
Residence Date:1891
Residence Place:Carleton Place, Lanark South, Ontario, Canada
Relation to Head:Head
Number of Employees:7
Can Read:Yes
Can Write:Yes
French Canadian:No
Father’s Birth Place:Ontario
Mother’s Birth Place:Ontario
Neighbours:View others on page
Household MembersAgeRelationshipMary A Mahen52HeadHenry A Schmondfeger27LodgerBertha Schmondfeger27Lodger

1891 Census

Film No 186296 Vol 18 – 21Ephraim Mayhew 64 Edwardsburg Lewis / Sarah Anne Livingstone 62 Edwardsburg Henry Gale / Polly June 19, 1872 Yonge 348

Related reading

Before the Schwerdtfeger Sisters – There was Aunt Sophia

The Unusual Schwerdtfegers — Genealogy

Reverend Schwerdtfeger Buried in the St. Lawrence Seaway

A Letter from a Local Student Nurse 1930s

Before the Schwerdtfeger Sisters – There was Aunt Sophia

So was there Money Hidden in the Schwerdtfeger House?

The Schwerdtfegerisms of Tobacco and Gambling

Honey Blaine

Years later when both sisters were seniors. Hazel had a stroke. Everyday Gladys took Hazel out for a walk holding her hand and initially almost pulling her. In the beginning Hazel could only walk a block. But Gladys never stopped her care or Rehabilitation of her sister. Eventually Hazel was able to walk 2 blocks which put them at my house at 6 Lake Ave West. But Hazel was not able to walk back that first day, so they stopped on my front steps. I had been watching the two sisters with admiration and realized Hazel was feeling quite stressed so we all had a cup of tea and a cookie on my front steps. Oh I forgot to say both Sisters would spread out their skirts to look nice ( almost Southern) and enjoy their tea like real Ladies. They were very sweet! Gladys continued her loving care of Hazel who eventually could walk on her own. But they were both so sweet they often stopped for tea on a tired day. 6 Lake Ave. W was originally the home of JG Craigs. Mr Craig was the 1st RBC Bank Manager and very well esteemed. He also was the proud owner of one of the 1st cars in Carleton Place and initially there was a 2 car garage behind the house. I purchased the house from the Craig Estate and they had loved their house so much that my husband and I had to be interviewed by the Executor of the Estate to ensure we were Reputable enough to buy the home.



“Standing in the Snow Saturday”.

Gladys Schwerdtfeger and Perky were enjoying the snow in front of their home at 68 Lake Avenue. Gladys grew up in the house with her sister Hazel.

Miss Clement’s Hat Studio Almonte

Miss Clement’s Hat Studio Almonte

Ladies who entered Miss Clement’s millinery parlors on opening days last week were ushered into a veritable bower of beauty and elegance, and if any were there who had formed the resolution to “ make last year’s hat do” for another season it must have been a strong will that did not succumb to the; temptation presented by the beautiful array which was to be seen.

Among all the creations shown The Merry Widow sailor in nile green Milan- shade, with tan and pink cabbage roses, feathers of green and tan, is one of the popular hats for this season, and |was greatly admired.

The Merry Widow hat is characterized by its wide-brimmed style. The width varied, but often hitting around 18 inches. The top of the hat was decorated, often with feathers (often Ostrich), flowers and sometimes even stuffed birds. Black or other dark colors were most commonly used for the hat, but bright shades of beige and purple were also used.  With the hair being curled up towards the top of the head and the hat placed on top of that, the two in combination created quite a voluminous look.

Another fashionable hat is in mohair braid, with water lilies and lily of the valley. But they can’t all be described. The only way is to drop in and see them. April 1908– Almonte, Ontario

Related reading

Hats, Ogilvy’s and Gaudy Teenage Years — Noreen Tyers

Local Women Wearing Hats– Photos Chica Boom Chica Boom

Mad For Hats!! Doris Blackburn’s Hat

Wearing Vintage Hats – Blowing the Lid off Katherine Newton

Bertha Schwerdtfeger — Mother of the Carleton Place Schwerdtfeger Sisters

Mad as a Hatter — Wearing Vintage Hats

Electrical Plugs — Hats– and Impressive Men – Putting on the Ritz in Almonte

Pour some Feathers on Me

Weird Wendell’s Paperback Writers

Gypsies Tramps and Thieves

What Would You do for a Hat Trick?

Mrs. James Prentice Hatmaker Milliner of Lanark

Mrs. James Prentice Hatmaker Milliner of Lanark
Photo-Kathleen Anne Palmer-O’Neil

Marion Umpherson Prentice, 1850-1918

With Files from– Kathleen Anne Palmer-O’Neil

My great-grandfather James Prentice, son of immigrant parents James Prentice and Mary Ann Fraser Prentice, was born in Lanarkshire, Scotland in 1850.

In 1874 James married Marion Umpherson, who was born at Umphersons Mills, Poland, Lanark County, in 1850. She was the daughter of James Umpherson and Agnes Waddell. Marion was working as a weaver at the time of her marriage. (Early spelling was “Umpherston“).

Upon the sudden death of her husband, Marion Umpherson Prentice found herself with a year-old son, James “Lorne” Prentice, and a 6-year-old daughter, Agnes Kathleen Prentice, to raise. She had received no money from her mother-in-law’s large estate: since her husband had died, his share of his mother’s estate went into trust for his children (James Lorne and Agnes Prentice) until they were 21 — despite the fact she was left with $1,736.72 worth of unpaid promissory notes along with many other unpaid bad debts from her husband’s business.

Obviously a stalwart woman ahead of her time, she did not immediately remarry to have the help of a husband to raise her children. No doubt with the help of her family raising the children and working at her old weaving job, she persevered for about 10 years until about 1890 when she purchased a millinery shop on the main street of Lanark Village. An early female entrepeneur, she and the assistants she hired kept up-to-date with millinery trends by attending regular fashion shows in the cities. In the big window of her shop she displayed her collection of hand-made hats — further back in the shop one could find “ladies delicate things” — intricately hand-sewn.

While business boomed, she raised her children, ran a successful business and, when her son James Lorne’s young wife Katie Jane Molyneaux (1882-1915) died leaving three young children, she raised them as well for four years until Lorne remarried. When daughter Agnes “Minnie” married James McLean, a tailor, she moved them into the house beside her own home/shop where Agnes obviously was still available to assist her — and her husband. Agnes had become a formidable seamstress in her own right, (her wedding photo shows some of her beautiful handwork); both she and her mother Marion passed their considerable sewing and hand-work knowledge down to Lorne’s young daughter, Jessie Marion Prentice, my mother, and to the nieces of James’ brothers, several of whom became “town seamstresses” both in Lanark County and in the wilds of the new Red River Settlement of Manitoba where some of James’ brothers settled in their middle years.

When she died in 1918 Marion left a considerable estate including several unpaid promissary notes showing she had continued her and her husband’s earlier practice of lending money over the years to family members. She never “retired” from her business and she never remarried. Her official cause of death in 1918 was “exhaustion”. She is buried beside her husband in Lanark Village Cemetery.

Marion Umpherson Prentice in front of her shop.

Lanark Era, 9 Oct 1895: “Mrs. James Prentice has returned home from a prolonged trip throughout Western Ontario.”

Perth Courier, 10 Apr 1896: “Mrs. James Prentice, having purchased the millinery business of the late Mrs. Dougherty, and engaged the services of Miss Pepper as Milliner, will have her “Millinery Opening” on Friday and Saturday, 10th and 11th of April.”

Lanark Era, 23 Nov 1897: “At Mrs. Prentice’s you will find the latest and most fashionable styles in Millinery and the lowest prices. . . . etc.” (Advertisment).

Lanark Era, 16 Mar 1898: “Mrs. James Prentice and her milliner, Miss Rice, are in Ottawa this week attending the spring openings.”

Lanark Era, 1 Apr 1898: “Clydesville – Mrs. Prentice displays beautiful millinery.”

Lanark Era, 29 June 1904: “Ladore – Mrs. J. Prentice and Mrs. J.G. McLean (Agnes Prentice McLean, dau), were the guests of Mrs. Wm. Umpherson on thursday last.”

Lanark Era, 27 June 1906: “Miss Laura Manion, who has been employd as milliner with Mrs. Prentice, left for her home in Arnprior on Sat. last.”

Lanark Era, 6 Mar 1907: Local news: “Mrs. James Prentice and her milliner are attending the Millinery opening in Toronto.”

Perth Courier, 16 Oct 1903: Lanark Links: “Miss McCargar and Mrs. Prentice had their millinery openings on Wed. of this week. Their show rooms are filled with the latest creations in the line of millinery. Miss McCargar has had her rooms changed from the rear of the second flat of the McDonald block to the front part.”

Almonte Gazette, 8 Aug 1904: Lanark Links: “The Lanark Millinery houses were in full feather last Friday, the spring opening day. The displays at Miss McCargan’s, Mrs. Prentice’s and Mrs. Cohen’s excelled those of former years, and were viewed by a large number of the town’s fairer sex.”

Lanark Era, Jan 23, 1918: Obituary, “Death of Mrs. James Prentice“: There passed away to her eternal reward on Tuesday evening the 22nd inst. Mrs. James Prentice, relict of the late James Prentice, at the age of 67 years and 7 months. Mrs. Prentice was born at Umpherston’s Mills, Lavant Twp. She was the daughter of the late James Umpherston of this village and has lived here for more than 50 years. 45 years ago she married the late James Prentice who was a harnessmaker in Lanark Village, and who died in 1880. About 25 years ago she started a millinery business and fancy store and conducted the same until her death. She has been in failing health for about 2 years, but only took to her bed at New Year’s, and her death was due to a paralytic stroke. One brother, Mr. William Umpherston of Poland, surviving her. She leaves one son, Mr. Lorne Prentice, and a daughter, Mrs. Jas. G. McLean of this village to mourn the loss of a kind and dutiful mother. It is a unique coincidence that her death occurred on the same day of the same month as that of her father. In the village and community she was known as a kind and inoffensive neighbour and her traits of character had endeared her to all who knew her. The funeral takes place Thursday, the 24th inst, from Zion Church to Lanark Village cemetery, Revs. Messrs. Dustin and MacLeod officiating.

With Files from– Kathleen Anne Palmer-O’Neil

Name:Marion Prentice
Marital Status:Widowed
Birth Year:abt 1852
Birth Place:Ontario
Residence Date:1891
Residence Place:Lanark Village, Lanark North, Ontario, Canada
Relation to Head:Head
Can Read:Yes
Can Write:Yes
French Canadian:No
Father’s Birth Place:Scotland
Mother’s Birth Place:Ontario
Neighbours:View others on page
Household MembersAgeRelationshipMarion Prentice39HeadAgnes Prentice16DaughterJames Prentice11Son
Enumeration District:83

Related reading

Nelson R Baker- Fashionable Tailor of Lanark

McLean the Tailor from Lanark and Other News

Community Comments– Lanark Village Postcard

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    2. Please take the Devil Out of Me? Rev. James Wilson of Lanark
    3. Does Anyone Remember Cohen’s in Lanark Village?
    4. Till Death Do Us Part in Lanark County?
    5. Lanark Village 1868
    6. Lanark Village Old Boys Reunion 1913 Names Names Names
    7. Lanark Village Social Notes– Hot Weather and Names Names Names 

100 Hands Thrown Out of Work –Lanark Village

A Walk through Lanark Village in 1871

Lanark Village News 1887–The $5 Wager and Other Things

Life in Lanark Village 1820 — Bad Roads Distilleries and Discontent!

So What Did We Find Out About this Photo from Lanark Village?

Revolutions of Death at Caldwell & Son’s

Remembering a Shoemaker in Lanark Village–Thomas Wilson

Lanark Village 1913 — Clippings Old Boys Week

So What Did We Find Out About this Photo from Lanark Village?

Sandy Caldwell King of the River Boys

More Clippings– Lanark Fire 1959

The Aftermath of the Lanark Fire June 1959

The Lanark Fire of 1895

Lanark Fire 1959– Hour by Hour

The Lanark Fire June 15th 1959

UFO Sightings in Lanark County 1982 — Lanark Village

John Strang Lanark Village

Lanark Village Social Notes– Hot Weather and Names Names Names 1900

More Tidbits About Lanark Village

Lanark Village 1952

Hi Linda
Your article about the Orange lodge reminded me of a pic of my grandfather (James Lorne Prentice who you have featured a few times).  Only because some one suggested the pin on his lapel in this photo might be that of the orange lodge or something.  

Stay safe

– LeeAnne

Newmarket, Ontario

Effie McCallum —– Missing Milliner

Effie McCallum —– Missing Milliner
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
21 Jan 1913, Tue  •  Page 10

I found this local social note from 1913 in the Ottawa Journal this week. I became interested as she was from Carleton Place and was going to study about the hat business. So, tonight I began to see if I could find out anything about her and found out her real name was not Elsie it was Effie, so her name was a misprint.

Chicago 1913

Chicago Tribune write up on the millinery opening 1913

To start off the Spring fashion season of 1913 one could go back to the Chicago Tribune anytime after Jan 1. Unfortunately, in Chicago Spring shopping is hard to fathom when so much snow is still ahead. For the purposes of this exploration of Mandel Bros and millinery, we start the Sunday after Valentines Day.

February 16, 1913 Chicago Tribune carried their usual full page feature of fashion. Chicago women would have wanted to know what styles Paris was showing, as this drove the fashion industry. Milliners would want to see the hats, but also know what colors were in style as well.

Mary Buel wrote this fashion column and captured the mood of Paris in her descriptions. Hats had the last word, ie, the last paragraph.

“Hats are of extreme importance as they seem to change from day to day, and it is really dangerous unless blessed with a full purse.” “The very newest shapes are perfectly tiny, with low rounded crowns, and the smallest turned up brims. some are made of straw with the brim of broche; others are entirely made of broche and in all sorts of light shades.”

What Effie and the McCallum family did not know was Chicago had a huge millinery business and they advertised for positions out of town. It was a way for out of town millinery establishments to purchase their supplies and also hope to find a pool of labor.

Hyland Bros, 84 E. Randolph advertised for yearly work for milliners to go to New York. Transportation was included. Just as Chicago had been a big draw for the rural girl to seek a job in Chicago, the allure of the bigger city of NY could also have had her move on once she had proven herself here. So one could say Effie thought she was going to be quite the millinery gal and it never happened.

It is hard to gauge how many “girls” we’re need to be hired by all those placing ads, except for William F. Chiniquy Co, 1700 W. Washington.

“Millinery Workers Are you handy with needle? We could use 50 girls to work in ladies hats, either to trim or to sew crowns on brims. you can earn from $10-$20 per week. Come ready to work. ”

In the Blue Book of Commerce of 1917, under Section 22 millinery, there are four companies listed as wholesale to the jobbing trade. Chiniquy, plus E. Eiger and Bros at 1249 S. Wabash, R. Lippert and Co at 1048 Huron, and George Wagner at 207 N. Michigan Ave. Where the other three advertised for their seasonal help is unknown, but if 50 new hires were needed for spring by one, perhaps that meant 200 jobs for the group of four. A few days later their ad was for straw operators, which paid $40-$75 per week. This would have been astounding wages for a man or a woman, but this ad was in the Wanted Female Help section. It seems a few select women could actually make better than a living wage. Sadly this was seasonal work, even tho their ads never provided that bit of information. Only the ads from D. B. Fisk state the work was year round.

The millinery job openings in 1919 were of perhaps even more importance than some spring opportunities for the past few years. The soldiers were returning home, and reclaiming their jobs. Women’s opportunities for employment typically held by men were not as great as during WWI, but now was not the time for the independent sort of gal to look for a job generally held by a man. It was a good idea to seek woman’s work, and spring millinery held that opportunity. It was that or Western Union Telegraph, stenographer, or the potential new shortened course to become a nurse.–FROUFROU 4 YOUYOU

Vintage 50s Hyland Bros. Co Chicago Importers Unique Hat image 0
Vintage 50s Hyland Bros. Co Chicago Importers Unique Hat

So what happened to Effie? I ran away at 15.5 to become a fashion designer and you can track me down. But Effie, not so much. When her father Robert McCallum died the obit only mentioned his son George and his daughter Maisie. Not one mention of his daughter Effie was made. She was mentioned in her brother George’s obit and it was mentioned that she had died before him. She was listed as Effie Sheppard, and no matter how many places I googled and looked I could not find any mention of her or her sister Maisie McCallum Miller.

I sense some things that embarrassed the family happened and her father disowned her. It happens.

St. Fillians-http://geneofun.on.ca/names/photo/2869697–FATHER OF EFFIE


The Ottawa Journal — UNCLE of Effie
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
04 Aug 1942, Tue  •  Page 20
The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
18 Aug 1983, Thu  •  Page 22 BROTHER OF EFFIE– EFFIE mentioned

Hats, Ogilvy’s and Gaudy Teenage Years — Noreen Tyers

Hats, Ogilvy’s and Gaudy Teenage Years — Noreen Tyers

Linda’s birthday fascinator

Your picture of the hat with the Swan just made me think of this story.

I noticed this picture on my Face Book page, it was put there by my dear friend Linda Seccaspina

Oh my goodness, it did bring back some fond memories, of my gawky teenage years. You know, long legs, skinny hair down, if it was not in French Braids. Anyone who knows me believes me to be somewhat shy, and does not look forward to being the person front and centre. I have been known to walk around the walls rather than just walk right in front and centre. I did not start up conversations but did answer when asked a question. My manners were good, let’s face it I was taught right from wrong by, my parents.

This reminds me of my teenage days, but I was somewhat a gawky teenage kid. Clothes were clean, body and hair sparkled, in fact I did not care if my nose was shiny, as I did not wear make up. What you saw was what you got.

In my early childhood days I was a bit of a tomboy, dressed last to go out anywhere. I usually climbed a tree and tore my good Sunday dress or got it dirty. My mother’s favourite saying to me “WELL YOU CAN’T MAKE A SILK PURSE OUT OF A SOW’S EAR”, it was true.

Well as all teenagers do, I would go shopping my school pals, I would get a lecture before we took the bus to go to downtown Ottawa and the Department Stores, you know: Ogilvy’s, Friemans, and Astor Chapeaus, it all depended on how much money you had as I was used to going to Woolworth’s and Beamish.

Lets Play Elevator- Charles Ogilvy Store — From the Pen of Noreen ...

This one day my girlfriends and I were on a tour to find those beautiful blue bloomer gym suits to wear in School. This suited me just fine as it covered up the undies and that is all you needed, and we all looked the same, like an orphan from the streets with this outfit on.

We had managed to find our gym suit and were about to look around. Well. it started in the Charles Ogilvy Store in the Millinery Department. Now one has to just stop and think of a skinny kid about five foot four, at the age of fifteen and weight of about one hundred pounds. Oh dear the legs were skinny, the knees big, just not a fashion Queen.

Plunking hats on long hair with little style, sure did not do anything for the pretty hats, of the latest style, I should have known better as some family members had worked at Ogilvy’s and I was known by some of the sales clerks. Well the pretty bonnets were just too big a temptation and me, as the class clown, thought I should plunk one of these veiled beautiful creations and then go into the act of modelling. Let’s face it teenage girls do not need much to get giggling and laughing, mind you we were entertaining the sales clerks. We were not rough but we sure did not do the hat justice and it was more of a comedy show.

The dear ladies from the Millinery Department, came over and said,” I know you are enjoying your shopping ladies, but this does not look very professional, so I think it would be best be on your way”. I have to say I did not have to be told twice as I did not want stories coming home.

107 Rideau

Well after wearing out our welcome at Charles Ogilvy Department Store, we left and spotting the Astor Chapeaus Shop, on Rideau Street we went to try our luck there. The store clerks were not of the same character as Ogilvy’s had been and we were asked to leave immediately.

I do have to say trying on hats continues to entertain me when the mood hits and I have just never outgrown the thoughts of fun– but I still do not give a hat a good showing.

Linda, this hat would definitely, be to my liking. Thank you for the memory but I will not come and borrow it from you as me and hats do not suit and I would ruin your hat image.

I do think my head is too small or maybe the hats were too big.

That’s the hat story, and it was a fun time and I did entertain my friends, and the good souls in the millinery Department at Ogilvy’s and no my parents did not find out.

Thank God.

From the ✒
of Noreen
July 24,2020


Sending Thoughts of Winter to You, from my Wee Dog Ruffy Noreen Tyers

A Trip in the Carrying Case– Noreen Tyers

Just Me Growing Up in the Early 1940’s Noreen Tyers

Grandma and the Cute Little Mice– From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Another Broken Bed Incident — Stories from Richards Castle — Noreen Tyers

Lets Play Elevator- Charles Ogilvy Store — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

At Church on Sunday Morning From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Jack’s in Charge-Scary Stories — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Adventures at Dalhousie Lake at the Duncan’s Cottages —- From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

I am Afraid of Snakes- From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Hitching a Ride Cross Town — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

My Old Orange Hat –From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Out of the Old Photo Album — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Snow Road Ramblings from Richards Castle — From the Pen Of Noreen Tyers

Summer Holidays at Snow Road Cleaning Fish — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Snow Road Adventures- Hikes in the Old Cave — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Putting Brian on the Bus– Stories from my Childhood Noreen Tyers

My Childhood Memory of Richard’s Castle –From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Grandpa’s Dandelion Wine — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

My Wedding Tiara — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Art of Learning How to Butter Your Toast the Right Way — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Smocked Dresses–From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Kitchen Stool — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Flying Teeth in Church — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Writings of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Memories of Grandpa’s Workshop — Noreen Tyers

Cleaning out Grandmas’ Fridge — Noreen Tyers Summer Vacation at Richard’s Castle

My Flower Seeds — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

My Barbra Ann Scott Doll –Noreen Tyers

Greetings From Ruffy on Groundhog Day Noreen Tyers

That Smell Of The Lanark County SAP Being Processed — Noreen Tyers

Adventures at Dalhousie Lake at the Duncan’s Cottages — Noreen Tyers

Where did Marty Get his Beatle Hat?

Where did Marty Get his Beatle Hat?


We walked up to one young swain and said, “That’s sure a swell burgundy Ringo cap you have there.” The youth, who would identify himself only as “Bill,” said, most soberly, “This is a John Lennon cap. Ringo caps have some braiding across the front.” We stood corrected. 1966

Marty Taylor– I bought a Beatles cap in Almonte and wore it proudly

Linda Seccaspina- Marty Taylor where did you buy it?

Marty Taylor– Honestly, I bought it at a clothing store very close to the old pool hall but the other side of the street. Any ideas?? Remember any clothing stores located there?

Dan Williams- Was Timmins’s

Marty Taylor- I can picture myself walking out of there with my Beatles cap on but I can’t for the life of me remember the name of the store. Could be Timmins’s. I assume it was across the street and just down from the pool hall?

Dan Williams –Marty Taylor yep. You mean a dutch boy cap. I believe that’s what John’s hat was

Dan Williams– Donovan wore one and Dylan


Dan Williams– I wanted one so bad but I could never find one. If I’d had the internet then I could have had one in 24 hours. I’m still a hat wearer though so maybe it’s not to late

Barbara Joan Cook– Dan Williams or was it Smolkins (sp) before Timmins?

Dan Williams– Barbara Joan Cook Could be. I wasn’t an Almontonian that far back. A Carleton Place boy me but I was going to high school here at the time. I just went to school and beat it back home.

Sandy France–  It was Johnson’s Clothing beside the Superior. Became Timmins. Smolkin’s was beside the Bank of Montreal. Worked there one summer for Moses Smolkin.

Sylvia Coones– Marty Taylor I believe it was called Johnstons back then. Carson Johnson owned it

Marty Taylor– Sandy France Must have been Johnson’s then. That’s the location.

Brian Sonnenburg– It was Johnsons clothing….I bought my black Beatles hat from Carson Johnson.





The Akron Beacon Journal
Akron, Ohio
11 Mar 1966, Fri  •  Page 24


The Morning Call
Allentown, Pennsylvania
08 May 1966, Sun  •  Page 42

Stores in Almonte by Sandy France

Sandy France This was the makeup of the South side of Mill Street in the fifties….the order may not be exactly correct and I may have missed someone…but it’s close

Dominion Stores later Mappins/Baker’s Jewellry and Flowers
Milady Beauty Salon
Karl Paupst Groceries
Jimmy Moreau Magazines
Albert T. Gale realtor
Bell Telephone exchange
Ivan Duncan barber
Superior Restaurant
Carson Johnson Men’s’ Wear
Royal Bank
Lewis Carr butcher
Art Smith electrician
Phil Needham shoemaker
Cliff Graham pharmacist
Doug James Confectionary
Winnard (Winnie) James barber shop
Raymond Jamieson Attorney (upstairs)
Moses Smolkin Men’s’ Wear
Bank of Montreal
Harold Proctor shoes
Millview Restaurant
Howard Giles Western Auto store
Stafford Law Office later CJ Newton Attorney
N. S. Lee hardware store
Elmer Carnegie pharmacist
Kinsella’s Esso garage later Irval Motors
Almonte Public Utilities
McCormick’s Ladies’ Wear
Ed Scott furniture later John Kerry
Wilf Snedden pharmacist
Ab Lotan restaurant
Johnny Erskine cold storage later IGA

Eugene O’Reilly had a store on the corner of Mill and Brae Streets and they closed out their business in 1928. Later on J. H. Proctor opened a boot and shoe store, also a harness shop in the back part of the building. On the other corner of Mill and Brae was the Bank of Montreal, then Smolkin’s store, Jas. Cochrane’s Men’s Wear, W. James Barber Shop, George Eades Boot and Shoe Store (Needham and Son, bought out Geo. Eades later on), A. B. Lotan’s Butcher Shop and on the second floor of some of these buildings were four places of business – A. Allan, tailor; R. A. Jamieson, lawyer; T. R. Patterson, dentist; Greig & Greig, lawyers. Mr. Pittard’s printing office was next. He once was editor of the Almonte Times paper. Then was W. D. Lea’s bakery and Laura and Nellie Hogan’s Millinery shop. Though the Hogans now are retired from business they will long be remembered, not only for their millinery work, but also for the kindness they showed to all who called at their shop.

Further along Mill street was Peterson’s Confectionery, Ivan Duncan’s Barber Shop, Telephone Office, W. Lawford’s Store, James Moreau’s store, then the Dominion Store. The last store on the block was Fred Robertson’s, who sold out to Wm. Pimlott in 1928.


Almonte 1859 Business Directory

1906 — Business Block is a Smouldering Block of Ruins– More Fires of Almonte

Elizabeth Lindsay of Almonte — Victorian Women Business Owners

Memories of Stedmans Almonte

McAdams Store Almonte

Almonte in the Twenties

Remembering John Kerry from Almonte—By Karen Hirst

N. S. Lee & Son Hardware Comments and History

Mary Delaney Caught Stealing at The People’s Store

Hand Typed Almonte History Notations Part 1

Cold Storage Plant in Almonte- Meat Locker Trivia

The Oldest IGA Employee & Other Almonte Memories

Appleton General Store – Names Names Names— Wesley West Appleton and Almonte Merchant

Needham’s Shoe Store in Almonte- Memories

McAdams Store Almonte

Mary Delaney Caught Stealing at The People’s Store

The Old Ice House in Almonte 1979

A 1978 Walking Tour of Mill Street Almonte



The Barbarity of a Hatpin

The Barbarity of a Hatpin



Hatpins were the weapons of women in the early 1900s.  They were used when they needed them and men and women have died being attacked with them. They said every modern woman possessed, in her hatpins a veritable arsenal. And so numerous have become the tragedies of this kind that police all over the country and even judges on the bench are taking serious notice of it. Hatpins are larger, longer and stronger than ever before. A thrust from one of them in the side may reach the heart and cause instantaneous death.

That women recognize the effectiveness of their own and formidable weapon  is now shown by the frequency which they resort to their use. Miss Abbott observed a man trailing behind her on the way home. His actions were suspicious  But she made no outcry and apparently paid no attention to him, though she kept a close watch on his every movement out of the corner of her eye.  Suddenly he made a rush and seized her purse, and pushed her to her knees. Her hand touched the head of a long hatpin and she fought him blindly.




Again Miss Abbott drove the slender stiletto home and felt it snap in two. Several inches of the steel pin was embedded in the robber’s flesh. Yelling like a dog with firecrackers tied to his tail, the man released the young woman and dashed off with the speed of the wind.

Miss Abbott calmly placed what remained of her hatpin in her hat and  resumed her Journey. At an all-night drug store, a block further she telephoned to police headquarters and report of what had happened. Now the Guthrie police are searching diligently for a gentleman with what remains of a large hatpin.

Her advice to any girl held up by a robber is to keep cool and bury about 5 inches of the hatpin in any assailant. Her experience has not intimidated her. She still walks alone to her boarding house from the telegraph office and feels no fear.






 - Calgary Herald
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
07 Apr 1909, Wed  •  Page 11


 - 1907




Battle of the Hatpins — Women of Local History

Mad For Hats!! Doris Blackburn’s Hat

Wearing Vintage Hats – Blowing the Lid off Katherine Newton

Bertha Schwerdtfeger — Mother of the Carleton Place Schwerdtfeger Sisters

Mad as a Hatter — Wearing Vintage Hats

Electrical Plugs — Hats– and Impressive Men – Putting on the Ritz in Almonte

Pour some Feathers on Me

Weird Wendell’s Paperback Writers


Gypsies Tramps and Thieves

What Would You do for a Hat Trick?



Local Women Wearing Hats– Photos Chica Boom Chica Boom

Local Women Wearing Hats– Photos Chica Boom Chica Boom

Local Women Wearing Hats– Photos Chica Boom Chica Boom

Please play while looking at photos



Please send me pictures of you wearing a hat. When I was a child my grandmother Mary Louis Deller Knight told me that you were never fully dressed up unless you sports a hat and gloves. Today I have made most of my hat collection and have over 145 hats. It is a true passion of mine and hope one day it all comes back.



Linda’s Hat Challenge… Send me a picture of you wearing a hat.. Amanda Thompson–At a wedding in Calgary last August.


Wanita Bates in one of my creations



Patti Lennox in her mother’s hat



Maryann Morley—Me as Minnie Pearl at the Radio show for Dale Scott

Linda, Here’s me in a hat from my niece’s first communion. I bought the hat at the Real Wool Shop. Theresa Fritz



Cheryl Shore—Me at Upper Canada Village this summer sporting a shade hat 
Brenda Mattey—Wedding bound
Not a photo of myself, but my lovely mother Marilyn Devlin.-Susan Devlin
Jean Bright
The beautiful Marilyn Robertson at St. James
Deborah Fleming
Kim Ronzoni’s Kitchen Food Demo for Saputo Foods at Farmer’s Pick
Rogall Photos
Kim Ronzoni’s Kitchen at the Annual Carp Garlic Festival trying to smile for an impromptu photo with fresh garlic in her mouth! 🤦🏽‍♀️
I never wore hats when I was younger but people always compliment me! Kim Ronzini
Louise A Gour
I love hats.. I just never seem to find a good opportunity to wear them. Here’s a picture if me when I was in Australia. Everyone wears a fascinator during the Melbourne Cup in Australia… So I went along. I actually really liked it. 🙂
Anne Born
Outside the old St Andrews Church in my anniversary Hat Joann Voyce
Christina A. Preece
Marlene Springer-Mom shopped at Mrs. Shanes for hats for years!
Heather Dorman
Julie Phillips-Bowden‎
The Granary Bulk and Natural Foods Tammy Thompson looking her witchiest best
Patricia Burnett-This is the iconic Jan Ferguson. Hats for birthday high tea with my BFF
Linda Seccaspina
The chatelaine today at my home away from home Crossroads in Perth– Lost Horizons film circa 1937

The Story About My Cinderella Hat

The Story About My Cinderella Hat


Kym Brown

Some days I am sure all of us wonder if we are making a difference in life by writing words, or with other forms of communication. Through my life I have tried hard to make people understand that they mattered, and hope that maybe I made their day brighter at some point in time.  But, I have always wondered if I did enough, and had I really made a difference to anyone.

Saturday I was at Fibrefest and Kym Brown’s Bombshell Revival Designs really wowed me. I loved her creations immediately. There are many of us that see things differently than everyone else, and you probably know someone who is like that in your life. Being different isn’t a bad thing, it just means you’re brave enough to be yourself and Kym’s line was for those that want to make a statement.




I took another stroll around the Almonte arena looking at all the amazing things, and once again I was back at Kym Brown’s stall. When I returned she asked,

“Did you once own Flash Cadilac in Ottawa?”

I nodded my head, and she got quite excited and said,

“I was in my teens when my friend and I shopped at your store in the 80s and your store made a big impact on me. It meant so much to me and my friend and its memory carried on with me in life.”

I felt like crying on the spot as each customer in my store was important to me. I want to stress that I will never take credit for anything–nor do I need thanks. All of the former customers and friends that have told me the same thing had it in them–some more than others. You just needed a wee push. It was always there my lovelies, always there.



Me and Kym’s hat design with Randy Hillier at Harvest Fest in Beckwith yesterday. Photo- Jennifer Fenwick Irwin




I think every person has their own identity and beauty. Being different is really wonderful. If we were all the same, it would be a boring world. All of you that shopped in my stores touched my life, whether it be staff, customer, or friend. I want you to know that you mattered, you helped, and you cared. You will forever be a pivotal name in the book of my life, so carry on Kym Brown, you have so much talent, and I am thrilled I met you on Saturday. You rendered me speechless. (which is difficult) Thank you for making my day and for this wonderful hat design that is now part of my life and collection. It meant a lot.


Kym’s site click here

Facebook page click here



HER HATS click here







The Last Skull of Savannah Devilles

Stayin’ Alive — Reconnecting With the Friends of Flash Cadilac

Should I Have Done that on Television?

The Stack Perm or the Disco Wedge ? 1970s Hair Fashion