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Strange acts in tailor shopSan Francisco Chronicle, June 22, 1905. Here’s an interesting bit of possible backstory to the saga of sharpshooting lunatic Richard Thomas Lobb, as told by a salesman who may have sold him a new suit and (under duress) a second-hand hat just prior to his anti-Hibernian and -Netherlandish rampage. If anyone out there happens to know WTF “invisible plaid” is, please bring me up to speed. tailor 2tailor 3
Here’s a disarmingly nonmaniacal photograph of Lobb: hplobb2



  1. I got intensely curious about “invisible plaid” and googled it. I found this page from the 1897 Sears Roebuck & Company Catalog, and this modern advice about how to dress for an interview. My best guess is it’s either some kind of tone-on-tone plaid print, or fabric woven into a texture that resembles plaid.

    • I was wondering if invisible plaid was a plaid fabric whose grid was so enormously big that an entire suit can be cut from within a single monochrome square. But your hypothesis seems more likely. I mean, where and why are they gonna builds looms that big?

  2. Oh also “He did not act like a crazy man.”?! Never mind the rest of his bizarre behavior, the part about clipping off the mustache and putting it in his pocket was what pushed it into “crazy” territory for me.

  3. Yes. One hates to think about a clientele in relation to whom this guy doesn’t count as “crazy.” Then again, autres temps, autres moeurs.

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