History Of The Aguadeño Hat

The history of the aguadeño hat, goes back approximately 160 years when a foreigner from Cuenca, Ecuador, disrupted a Panama hat, traditional of the country of the south and taught to weave it to the people of Aguadas, taking advantage that in the region grew the palm of Iraca ( "Carludovica Palmato").

Subsequently, they began to create workshops where men and women knitted; This gave a great boom to the industry of Aguadas, boosted, especially, by the exports to Spain, Cuba and, later, the United States. It is said that at the time, there were up to 5000 weavers, throughout the municipality of Aguadas.

Due to the tasks that the men had to perform in the field, the fabric functions were transferred to the women, with Mercedes Jiménez Giraldo, the "woman in the hands of silk", to be considered as the best weaver in the history of Watery

The first exporter of aguadeños hats was the Spanish José Cerra de Oviedo, who had lived in Aguadas since 1874 and married Flora Palacio, a native of the municipality, who started selling the hat to other countries in the world.

Currently, the municipality has approximately 700 weavers, which derive their sustenance from this ancestral tradition and to which, today, we want to give continuity, with the commercialization of our typical products.

Curious Fact: Although the Panama hat is originally from Ecuador, do you know what its name is?

Its name comes from the fact that they became relevant during the construction of the Panama Canal when thousands of hats were imported from Ecuador for the use of construction workers. When Theodore Roosevelt visited the channel he wore that hat, which increased his popularity.

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