April 20, 2022

A Tip of the Hat

George Marshall's Many Hats

As a soldier, George Marshall wore many types of military covers (or hats), depending on the season and the uniform.

Lt. Marshall, wearing an M1902 Army cap, with Lt. Bruce Palmer, Fort Leavenworth, KS, 1907.


Lt. Marshall wearing a a rather beat-up Stetson U.S. Army campaign hat, also at Fort Leavenworth.


Lt. Col. Marshall wearing a World War I garrison cap.


Gen. Marshall also wore a garrison cap in World War II.


Gen. Marshall wore several types of visor caps during his time as Army Chief of Staff.


This cap with his summer khaki uniform.


This visor cap with his Class A “pinks and greens.”


Visor cap with his tropical white uniform (sorry for the odd angle).


And finally, the very fancy visor cap for his dress blues.

It was customary for men to wear hats when wearing civilian clothes as well, and Marshall does not disappoint with his selection.

Marshall as a teenager, dressed up and holding a bowler hat.


Cadet Marshall wearing a very tall shako with his VMI uniform.


The black bowler makes another appearance, on Marshall and Lily’s wedding day in 1902.

Marshall in a summer seersucker suit and straw boater.


Marshall wearing a driversĀ  (or flat) cap near Tientsin, China, on a donkey-mounted hunting trip in the mid-1920s.


We see the drivers cap again as Marshall sails on the Andrea Doria on his way to accept the Nobel Prize in 1953.


Riding in the 1920’s in a fedora.


Fishing with his wife Katherine in Washington state in the 1930s, wearing perhaps the same (but a bit more beat up) fedora.


Marshall wearing a Panama hat with a flat brim in Hawaii, 1940.


Wearing a brimmed cap with flap to keep the neck and ears warm, hunting with Gen. “Hap” Arnold in November 1945.


Marshall wearing a Panama hat with a rolled brim in Hawaii, 1947. Katherine’s hat is quite a furry creation…


I think this is the same Panama hat gardening at Dodona in the 1950s.


Marshall in academic regalia including a mortarboard in 1947, when he was presented with an honorary Doctor of Laws.

His favorite hat by far is the homburg, which we see in two colors — light and dark.

Light homburg at the Moscow Foreign Minister’s Conference 1947.


At VMI September 1952


On his 75th birthday in 1955.


Greeting Bernard Baruch at the Pinehurst, NC airport.


At the Pinehurst Post Office in 1955.


The dark homburg in 1940.


Also in 1940 at the Army-Navy game.


And finally at the grocery in Leesburg, VA.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this tour of George Marshall’s many hats.

Before becoming director of library and archives at the George C. Marshall Foundation, Melissa was an academic librarian specializing in history. She and her husband, John, have three grown children, and live in Rockbridge County with three large rescue dogs. Melissa is known as the happiest librarian in the world! Keep up with her @MelissasLibrary.