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October 4, 2020

Vintage Photos Show What Barbershops Looked Like in the Early 20th Century

At their beginnings, barbers were known for much more than cutting hair. By the middle ages, they acted as surgeons, dentists, and religious officials as well. As of 1747, barbers were no longer allowed to perform surgical procedures.

In 1893, the first barber college opened in Chicago, Illinois, followed by two more barber colleges in Iowa in 1899 and 1900. These schools offered “training, education, and professionalism to the world of facial hair trimming,” bringing about a new and successful industry.

Around the early 1900s, barbershops began to exude a town hall kind of feel - a place for men to socialize, hear the daily news, and gossip with one another.

Over the course of the following decades, barbers became recognized as professionals who could trim men’s hair and treat disorders of the skin and scalp. As techniques and tools have advanced throughout the years, the camaraderie and self-care that comes from barbershops remains a staple. Not only that, but the aspiration of men to look and feel good about themselves has carried on, helping to boost the industry today.

Here below is a set of amazing vintage photos that shows what barbershops looked like over 100 years ago.


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