Today's Tidbit... Football Helmets Without Chin Straps ($)
Old sporting goods catalogs allow us to understand how football equipment evolved, with some of the equipment's evolutionary paths leading to dead ends. One of those dead ends was GoldSmith's model 72 football helmet, offered in the 1927-28 Fall and Winter Catalog. Like other helmets of the time, they constructed the model 72 of leather, with a molded crown and leather straps crossing the crown. It appears to be an ordinary helmet for the era, with one exception.
Since Riddell introduced plastic helmets in 1940, the chin strap has been one of the primary tools for keeping helmets in place. Whether the chin strap was single or double-anchored, the wearer's chin has always rested in a leather or foam pouch that sat midway along the strap. Before then, football chin straps were thin elastic straps that wrapped under the jaw, not over the chin, as seen in the images below.