What The Best Dressed Workers Were Wearing

When the George Master Garment Corp issued their catalogs for monogrammed work uniforms “for every industry” and hometown bowling teams too, it was akin in the blue collar world to the latest runway extravaganza for the high fashion universe.

Of course, what’s wrong with this picture is that it includes no people of color or female gender. But generic white was the color of the American dream in 1951 when this catalog was published.

Everyone looked snappy in a military sort of way. The uniforms and the logo badges and patches were designed to have the same effect. Esprit de corps and a sense that these were authorized personnel. There are still professional work uniforms—if you call T-shirts, hoodies and parkas uniforms. But the days of these snazzy, well-tailored official genres are virtually gone. Hey, even the police wear baseball caps these days.

4 thoughts on “What The Best Dressed Workers Were Wearing

  1. WFouts

    Thank you for this post. I heard your conversation on Marketplace Morning Report and had to see the article. The town of Ligonier is pronounced Ligg-ah-neer, at least among us Hoosiers. As a small boy growing up in Columbus, Indiana, I remember seeing many of the working men around town in various uniforms like these. On the second page of the catalog shown above, there is a logo for Saps Bakery which was a large commercial bakery in Columbus. Many of my friends dads and moms worked there. What a unexpected surprise, thank you.