The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


September 27, 2013

Old Time Barbershops



Also on Second Street was Monty Bales. He was there about as long, and at the same time, as “Pickles” was in Lyons. On Camanche Avenue was the multi-talented Rex Quick, who played several musical instruments; and on Fayette Street there was the economically-priced Neighborhood Barber. Jake Timmer was on 6th Avenue So, across the street from the Herald and below the Hoffman Apartments, near the picture shows. It was a long skinny shop with its chairs and a backbar on the left. Old Mr. Lawson’s was another one on 4th Street.


Most boys learned the art of verbally grappling with peers by sitting in barbershops listening to men argue. The famous industrial league catcher, Dick Crider, reflected that … “My Step-Dad was a Barber.  In the late 30's he cut hair at Walt Iversen’s on 2nd Street, across from Machael's.  It was also a pool room.  I was only in third grade, but I remember getting a candy bar for getting my haircut.  His name was Archie "Tommy" Thompson.  He had a brace on his leg and walked with a cane.”


Barbershops were places that “rights of passage” occurred, as men brought in their sons for haircuts. Strict fathers often called the shots on styles, even in absentsia. Bob King remembers being taken to Harry Turner’s on 4th Street, where John R. Sr. had Harry do a short cut, despite long hair’s popularity. Even when Bob went alone, and gave contrary directions, Harry still cut it Dad’s way. Later, Bob would change barbers just to get it his way. Thus, barbering contributed to a boy becoming a man and asserting his own hair style.

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