Sunday, June 16, 2019

Like all agricultural workers, Farmer John toils mightily from sunup to sundown. Lately he worked so hard hoeing and planting and weeding, he shed his overalls and shirt, deciding he could work just as well in his long johns and be more comfortable. Still, he worked up quite a sweat. Like millions of farmers before him, he learned that his union suit cooled him down whenever a gentle breeze came up. 

While working he noticed that his bright red union suit kept birds, from crows to sparrows, away from his crops so he decided he would spend an hour or two each day as a human scarecrow. 

Farmer John, Union Suit Fan
 and Part-time Scarecrow

Monday, June 3, 2019

Union Suits - YesterYear

Sam of Duluth, MN sent me this copy of a postcard he had found in a box of letters while going through his deceased grandpa's attic. The card, featuring a man dressed in a well made "summer" union suit, was addressed to his grandpa from a clothing company located in Chicago, Illinois.

The ad agreed to send Sam's grandpa three "French Balbriggan Union Suits" for less than three dollars, COD with no delivery charges!  Apparently, this limited bargain was the "greatest value we have ever offered." Can you imagine the price of this long underwear compared to what we have to pay for union suits in this day and age?! 

Sam, a union suit wearer himself, told me his grandpa wore union suits year around but he doesn't know if he ever purchased these. Probably not since the reverse of the card required the recipient to print his name and address before mailing, and since Sam thought his grandpa wore only long sleeved union suits. He believes the postal date of this card may have been between 1915 and 1922. The date on the reverse side mailed to his grandpa was illegible. 

Thanks, Sam. This is very interesting and the price of that underwear is extraordinary. I had not run across any this inexpensive. The postcard itself may be worth some money to you as there are probably collectors that would pay to own it. Appreciate you taking the time to send... Chris

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Union Suits - YesterYear 
Update of Babe Ruth, Union Suit Fan and Underwear Spokesman!

Recently, I heard from Shawn Herne, Executive Director of the Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation, Inc. He had run across my posting of August 6, 2017 featuring the one and only Babe Ruth who was spokesman for union suit manufacturers in the 1920's and early 1930's. Back then men and boys just had to have and wear the underwear touted by their baseball hero and buddy. Millions of union suits were sold in the U.S. thanks to his efforts.

Babe's birthplace and museum, located in Baltimore, Maryland at 216 Emory Street, explores the life of Babe Ruth described as "Baltimore's native son who became America's first sports celebrity and an international icon." 

Shawn sent me three photos taken of objects from the museum's archives which they hope to display in an upcoming exhibit of the Babe's sponsorship of products including Babe Ruth Underwear. The museum / foundation owns the "All America Athletic Underwear" and the box they came in shown here:

"Babe Ruth Buddie" Underwear

That's Some Really Old Underwear!

When in the Baltimore area be sure to visit the Birthplace / Museum and view their outstanding exhibits:

Or go to: 

Added May 27, 2019:
Max of Topeka, KS sent in this 1928 photograph of a man playing golf in his "Babe Ruth All American Underwear." He noticed that at the bottom of the box of underwear shown above it says "The Champion Nine." "No doubt a nod to golfers everywhere and their favorite underwear." Max also said that "the boy caddy also shown in this picture is probably wearing a Babe Ruth Union Suit too but has the good sense to wear clothes over his underwear."

Thanks, Max. Does that guy know fashion or what?! Must have been a hot day. Cool socks too. You're probably correct that in 1928 the boy shown is most likely wearing a union suit as well. Thanks for sending ... Chris

Added June 5, 2019:
Another photo was emailed to me by Ray of Ogden, UT.  It is of a man and boy playing baseball in what appears to be Babe Ruth union suits; Circa late 1920's. Thanks, Ray... Chris

I guess it just goes to show you that 100 years ago, guys were happy to have their photos taken in their union suits just like we are today!

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Hey Union Suit Fans:  I am just back from a great trip to northern New England. The air there is cool and clear. Springtime is beginning to make an appearance. I had never been to Vermont and New Hampshire before. What a beautiful part of the U.S.A. This is Union Suit country!

That's me all right, taking in the beautiful lake and mountain scenery early one morning. Now that I am back home in Idaho, look for more great stories and photos posted in Union Suit Fan and Union Suit Fans in the Limelight!

Over the next few weeks I will be featuring the comic duo antics of Laurel and Hardy. I consider Stan Laurel the first and foremost union suit fan. Don't miss him and Hardy in Union Suit Fans in the Limelight... Chris Ayers

Friday, May 3, 2019

Union Suit Fans and Wearers...

Tomorrow, May 4th, marks the third anniversary of my blog, Union Suit Fan, and the first anniversary of my companion blog, Union Suit Fans in the Limelight. If you haven't checked out “Limelight” give it a try. Presenting guys in their Union Suits has been alot of fun for me and I hope enjoyable for you. My two blogs are approaching 60,000 views from folks in 27 countries! I wasn't sure if photographs and stories about long-handled Union Suits would be of interest to very many. Thus, you can imagine my delight as these long underwear blogs have been warmly viewed by so many diverse people from so many places.

Thanks for all of your photos, emails and posting comments. Your stories have been really great. As I've said before, I couldn't do this without you. Keep 'em coming. We've only touched the “tip of the iceberg” in these initial years. There are a few hundred stories and photos of Union Suit underwear wearers to come! 

I'll be taking the next ten days off while my wife and I tour northern New England. We expect it will be a bit cool, some days cloudy with intermittent rain, so you can bet I will pack and be wearing my union suits. I will reply to blog comments and your emails upon my return. In the meantime, stay buttoned. I will.

Best regards,  Chris Ayers, Union Suit Fan