Mrs. Dewson Closes Hat Shop After 37 Years

A Fillmore Street icon closes store after almost four decades.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Poor health and a bad economy causes Ruth Dewson to close her famed hat shop

    Ruth Dewson's outfits are not complete without a hat.  Hats are her life.

    "My father had hats. I always wore hats so when I came to San Francisco, I just started wearing hats," Dewson said.

    Her journey to San Francisco is a colorful one.  She was born in Paris, Texas.  Mrs. Dewson is the youngest of ten children.  At age 16 she ran away from home, moved to L.A. to live with her sister and work for a telephone company.  Dewson decided San Francisco would be a good home for her and selling hats would be a great business.

    Former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown became good friends with Mrs. Dewson over the years.

    "Being the person that she is, a genius at marketing, she saw a niche that needed to be filled in San Francisco," Brown said.

    She opened a shop on Fillmore Street.

    Nearly 40 years later, because of failing health and a tough recession, Mrs. Dewson was forced to close her store on April 29th.

    She now lives in an assisted living facility.  Your can purchase hats with her label in it on line.