Blocked Out: 10 Closed & Abandoned Hat-Making Factories

Luckenwalde Hat Factory 1

Designed by German architect Erich Mendolssohn and opened in 1921 (though it looks MUCH newer), the abandoned Herrmann Hat Factory in Luckenwalde, near Berlin, even resembles a hat though the peaked roof of the dyeing hall above was meant to disperse noxious vapors.

Luckenwalde Hat Factory 2

Luckenwalde Hat Factory 3

Luckenwalde Hat Factory 4

These images of the cavernous former hat factory were taken on an overcast day in early April of 2010 by Flickr user defiant3, and would appear to show the complex in either renovation mode or possibly the early stages of demolition. Hopefully it’s the former – the factory is one of Mendolssohn’s most acclaimed works and contributed greatly to establishing his reputation as an internationally-known architect.

Richman, Poor Man

abandoned Richman Brothers factory Cleveland 3

The Richman Brothers company was established in Cleveland back in 1879 and by the early years of the twentieth century, the producer of men’s suits and hats had expanded to a 23-acre complex at 1600 E. 55th St. In 1969, the Richmans sold out to F.W. Woolworth Co. of New York, who closed their Richman unit (including the Cleveland manufacturing and distributing center) in 1992.

“Wherever I Lay My Hat, That’s My Home”

Adam Hats Lofts Dallas 2

Adam Hats Lofts Dallas 1

The former Adam Hats factory in Deep Ellum (a neighborhood of Dallas), Texas escaped the fate of most closed and abandoned hat factories by reinventing itself as a luxury condo community. Mind you, the management, employees and hat-making machinery of the 1955-1986 Adam Hats factory was long gone by the time the historic building re-opened as the Adam Hats Lofts.