This coat was made from the fur of foxes raised on the Fromm Fur Farm in Hamburg, Wisconsin. The jacket is covered in light-silver fox fur and lined with a taupe fabric. Straps allow the coat to also be worn as a cape.
In the early decades of the 20th century, it was fashionable to use fox fur on everything from scarfs, capes, and coats to trim for suits and gowns. Anticipating a shift in tastes toward lighter colored furs, the Fromm Brothers’ silver foxes were, for a time, the most prized fur available. Growing rapidly in the 1920s and 1930s, the Fromm Brothers fox farm upended buying practices in the fur industry and played a major role in the development of the canine distemper vaccine.
Listen below to the segment on Wisconsin Public Radio’s Wisconsin Life.
Written by Ben Clark, January 2017.
Object courtesy of the Marathon County Historical Society.