It is seen everywhere these days, from the high street to the catwalk; as a piece of embroidered workwear and promotional advertising whether for a business, a place or an event. They are functional as well as being stylish, they shield the eyes from the sun, but where did the humble baseball ball come from? Here’s a potted history.

As its name suggest it was our American cousins who developed the cap but when it made its first appearance way back in 1849, worn by the New York Knickerbockers it was made of nothing more than straw. However, within a few years’ teams it was made of fine merino wool. It featured a crown, with an attached visor and the basic style hasn’t changed seen.

Known as “No 1”, it was soon used by all the leading amateur teams. Depending on the grade of wool used could be purchased for two dollars or less. Wow, those were the days. A few cents would buy you a version made from flannel. As today top players were featured in adverts. Various modifications have been added over the years, such as a stitched bill (1903, or adding the team’s emblem, first used by the Detroit Tigers in 1901.

However, 1954 saw a major change in design and it is this design we know today. The “59Fifty” became the official cap of Major League Baseball in America and is still used today, although there have been various experiments to alter the shape and style, the basic design stays the same.

Today it is possible to buy baseball caps not only to support your baseball team (come on you Red Sox), but for virtually any sporting team across the world, and business’ too have seen the potential, so if you need to use it as a piece of embroidered workwear the baseball cap is still the cap of choice.