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This Pennsylvania Hatmaker Has Been in Business for 151 Years. Here's Why It's Not Going Anywhere

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03.10.2019

One day in 1960, the schools closed in Adams­town, Pennsylvania, in Lancaster County, as much of the population spilled out onto the streets to greet visiting royalty. Roy Rogers, America's famous singing cowboy, had come to town to personally thank the good folks who made his hats.

Bollman Hat Company owns some of the world's hottest brands, including Kangol and Helen Kaminski. And wearers of hipster fedoras have recently stirred demand. But the factory--which occupies half-a-million square feet across eight buildings connected by catwalks and tunnels--operates much as it did when Rogers stopped by to say howdy. In fact, production has hardly changed since 1868, when George Bollman, the son of German immigrants, set up shop in a former whiskey distillery on Main Street. Well, electricity has been added. Back then, a nearby creek powered the machinery, which churned out men's hats that were sold by stores under their own names. As it was with the Model T, you could get any color you wanted so long as it was........

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