|The Grits n Ham suede jacket — came through the doors at the luncheonette, made a brief stint on etsy, and wound up in Utah, beloved at last.|
—Feedback from the woman who bought the 1970s Grits n Ham suede jacket, from the luncheonette.
My answer: It wasn't mine, though it would have been if it and I had crossed paths in the past. Especially if I'd come across it in college, when I was a double major, one of those majors being History, which serves pretty well when it comes to researching a jacket like this.
Nearly everything that comes through the luncheonette gets a pretty thorough working over: I start with the label, go through trademarkia, patent archives, old ads (often found on *bay), legal records.
|Letter written from Ardmore Air Force Base, 1943. The writer says, I have been to Ardmore once and I don't think a hell of a lot of it.|
|Main Street in Ardmore, 1958.|
|A later 1970s label (which, upon second thought, makes me wonder if the Grits n Ham jacket was actually from the 1960s)|
76 voters-- 1 janitor, 1 patternmaker, 11 cutters, 3 set-up department employees, 3 finishing department employees, 2 shipping department employees, 6 linegirls, and 49 employees performing other work. All voted, as earlier indicated, with 5 challenges made. The Company challenged Pat Wilson, a set-up department employee, as a supervisor; the Union challenged Velma Trent, a finishing department employee, as a supervisor; the Union challenged Myrtha Heartsill and Gladys Roberts,6 linegirls, as supervisors; and the Union challenged Ruth Wills, the patternmaker.The details of the case are a bit sad: you can imagine the group of employees hoping to do some good, imagine Mr. Simpler hoping to stave off changes that might lose him money, imagine the Union lawyers interviewing him, cross-examining him, when all he wants to do is go home and have a good steak. And it gives you a glimpse into how coats like this were made, by patternmakers, and cutters, and finishers, and linegirls, and a tiny shipping department, and by women with names like Myrtha Heartsill and Velma Trent.
And that's what I found out about the Grits n Ham jacket.