Meet the American who invented the hard hat, a proud symbol of our nation's working class

The people who still build it today.

Tip your safety cap to Edward W. Bullard (1893-1963), 'n Amerikaanse. Army veteran who crafted the world’s most important piece of industrial protective equipment after returning from the carnage of World War I.

Hard-hat workers are brave people doing important work,” said Wells Bullard, CEO of E.D. Bullard Co. in Kentucky, a manufacturer of personal safety equipment. She’s also a great-granddaughter of the hard-hat inventor.

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They are the people building our roads, bridges and infrastructure, moving our economy forward,” het sy bygevoeg.

The effort requires a lot of hard hats.

Sommige 33 miljoen Amerikaners, oor 10 percent of the national population, work hard-hat jobs today, according to Cam Mackey, president and CEO of the International Safety Equipment Association.

Edward W. Bullard, a veteran of World War I, invented the hard hat in 1919. It was inspired by the helmets worn by American doughboys.

Edward W. Bullard, a veteran of World War I, invented the hard hat in 1919. It was inspired by the helmets worn by American doughboys. (Bullard)

Edward Bullard helped found the nonprofit trade association in 1933.

The hard hat today is more than just an important piece of personal safety equipment.

It came to symbolize the growing schism between working-class Americans and leftist elitists during the Vietnam War, most notably during the New York City Hard Hat Riot of 1970.

Construction workers, incensed by images of people burning American flags, walked off their job sites en masse and clashed with largely college-educated, white-collar anti-American protesters in Lower Manhattan.

Sommige 33 miljoen Amerikaners, oor 10 percent of the national population, work hard-hat jobs today.

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