The Radio Hat

Before the age of Walkman's, Discman's and iPod's, wearable portable music was a rarely seen item. That wasn’t the case for the young generation of the late 1940's, who were soon to be wearing the 'Radio Hat'.

The radio hat was designed using radio valve technology attached to a pith helmet, incorporating tuning knobs, an aerial, connected to a battery that would sit in your pocket. The product was the brainchild of Victor Hoeflich's New York based company, American Merri-Lei Corporation.

It first went on sale in 1949 entitled 'Man From Mars Radio Hat'. It was met with initial commercial success, but the fad did not last long, and by the mid 1950's they were rarely seen. This was predominantly due to the inferior quality and reception compared to other household radios at the time.

The hat was available in wide assortment of colours however.

It wasn’t the first radio hat to be seen, as an earlier non-commercial version was seen in 1922 London built inside a top hat.