Sunday, June 19, 2016

Shave, haircut and a beer - barbershops in Globeville

In the years before World War II, a visit to a barbershop was a regular and frequent occurrence. The all-male hang-out was not only a place to get a shave and haircut, but to catch up with friends, tell jokes and generally unwind. Conversations included family, sports, local gossip and politics and everyone participated - the fellow getting the haircut and those waiting for a haircut. A newspaper was on hand to verify the facts.
Barbershops were classy establishments, with large mirrors, marble counters lined with colorful glass tonic bottles, and comfortable chairs fitted with leather upholstery. Everything from the shaving mugs to the advertising signs featured an artistic treatment. The aromas of cherry and butternut-flavored pipe tobacco and the scent of hair tonics, pomades and oils welcomed the patron with a warm familiarity. Men would take their sons to the barber to carry on the manly tradition.
Some establishments, like Alex Kohut's at 4945 Washington, or Paul's Barbershop at 4500 Washington included a saloon. There was also John Folcik's at 4531 Washington, Lee Gregston's at 82 E. 45th, Alex San Roman at 190 E. 45th and that of Sam Maestes at 4485 Washington.
Many of those former locations still exist in the neighborhood - perhaps an opportunity for regular grooming, a social center, civic forum and bastion of manliness.  

Sam Maestes Barbershop at 4485 Washington
Photo ® Denver Public Library

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