The Story of President Truman's Hat
A fedora reminds the CU movement of one of its brightest days.
January 15, 2014
In honor of National Hat Day (yes, it does exist), which takes place every January 15, here’s a story about a hat, President Harry S. Truman, and CUNA.
It was May 1950 and the nation's 33rd president dropped by Madison, Wis., for the dedication of Filene House, at that time the headquarters for CUNA and CUNA Mutual Group.
President Truman gave the hat (held by Truman in the photo below) to Wisconsin Gov. Oscar Rennebohm while traveling in the presidential motorcade.
Rennebohm’s hat had blown away in the wind and into a crowd of people. Upon seeing what happened, Truman handed his hat to the governor.
Later in the day, Rennebohm tried to give the hat back to the president, but Truman refused.
“Keep it, it’s yours now,” Truman said.
Years later, the hat was donated to CUNA by the governor’s granddaughter.
It now resides at the America’s Credit Union Museum in New Hampshire, where it serves as a reminder of an important day in credit union history.