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牛仔裤是谁发明的?
Who Made Those Bluejeans?

[2018年4月16日] 来源:纽约时报 作者:MELANIE REHAK   字号 [] [] []  

In the beginning, there were Levi’s. In 1853, during the heart of the gold rush, a Bavarian émigré named Levi Strauss arrived in San Francisco from New York, looking to expand his family’s East Coast dry-goods business. Among his wares were blankets, cloth by the yard and durable work pants, sometimes called “jeans pants.” Then in 1872, one of Strauss’s customers, a tailor named Jacob Davis, made him the offer that would change his fortunes — and the way Americans dressed — forever. Davis had been buying Strauss’s blue denim and duck cloth to sew “waist-overalls” and had perfected a method of reinforcing them with the same copper rivets he used on horse blankets. Unwilling to put up the $68 necessary to patent his creation, he suggested that Strauss pay the fee in exchange for a half-interest in the business.

起初,有Levi’s牛仔裤。1853年,在淘金热的高潮,一个名叫利维·斯特劳斯(Levi Strauss)的巴伐利亚移民从纽约来到旧金山,想扩大他家族的东海岸公司(East Coast)的纺织品生意。他的产品包括毯子、大量布料和耐磨的工作裤——这种裤子有时被称为“牛仔裤’”。1872年,斯特劳斯的一位顾客、一个名叫雅可布·戴维斯(Jacob Davis)的裁缝提出一个建议,这个建议将彻底改变利维的命运以及美国人的着装方式。之前戴维斯经常购买斯特劳斯的蓝色粗斜纹布和帆布,缝制“齐腰工装裤”,而且用他做马鞍褥的铜铆钉改进了加固方法。他不愿花68美元给自己的创造申请专利,所以提议让斯特劳斯来支付这个费用,回报是这个生意一半的利润。

The patent for “improvement in fastening pocket-openings” was granted in 1873, and soon after Levi Strauss & Company opened its first San Francisco factory to manufacture bluejeans. The original design, which was simply called “XX,” was eventually assigned lot number 501. Competition was fierce: In addition to an upstate New York company called Sweet-Orr, founded in 1871 (which may actually have been the first commercial jeans producer), there were countless regional jeans companies by the turn of the century, including Osh Kosh B’Gosh in Wisconsin and Carhartt in Michigan. In 1911, the H.D. Lee Mercantile Company of Kansas started producing its own brand of workwear, which eventually led to Lee Dungarees. Along with Wrangler (originally founded in 1904 as the Hudson Overall Company of Greensboro, N.C.) and Levi’s, Lee went on after World War II to become what James Sullivan, author of “Jeans: A Cultural History of an American Icon,” calls “the big three” of bluejeans.

“改进加固口袋的方法”的专利在1873年获得批准,不久之后,利维·斯特劳斯公司(Levi Strauss & Company)在旧金山开设了第一家工厂,生产蓝色牛仔裤。最初的设计被简单命名为“XX”,最终指定的批号为501。竞争非常激烈:1871年纽约州北部成立了一个名叫甜蜜奥尔(Sweet-Orr)的公司,它实际上可能是第一个牛仔裤生产商;到20世纪初,出现了数不清的地区牛仔裤公司,包括威斯康星州的奥什·科什·比哥什公司(Osh Kosh B’Gosh)和密歇根州的卡哈特公司(Carhartt)。1911年,堪萨斯州的H·D·李商业公司(H.D. Lee Mercantile Company)开始生产它自己的工作服品牌,最终演变为李牌工装裤(Lee Dungarees)。Levi’s公司、Lee公司和牛仔公司(Wrangler,它成立于1904年,最初名为北卡罗来纳州格林斯博罗市哈德逊工装裤公司[Hudson Overall Company of Greensboro, N.C.])这三家公司一直存续到“二战”后,成为詹姆斯·沙利文(James Sullivan)所说的牛仔裤“三巨头”。沙利文是《牛仔裤:一个美国标志的文化史》(Jeans: A Cultural History of an American Icon)的作者。

Regardless of brand, jeans have reflected the mood of the country since the moment they were introduced. “You went from cuffed jeans in the ‘50s to faded and bell-bottoms in the ‘60s and early ‘70s, to the designer jeans of the disco era, the saggy jeans of the hip-hop era and on to the exclusive $300 jeans we now call premium,” Sullivan says. And like all truly revolutionary products, jeans have inspired adoration, outrage and everything in between. As Yves Saint Laurent said more than once, “I wish I had invented bluejeans.”

撇开品牌不说,牛仔裤从诞生起就反映了这个国家的情绪。“从50年代的翻边牛仔裤,60年代、70年代初的褪色喇叭牛仔裤,到迪斯科舞时代的设计师牛仔裤,嘻哈时代松垮垮的牛仔裤,再到如今300美元的高端牛仔裤,”沙利文说。像所有真正具有革命性的产品,牛仔裤激发了爱慕、愤怒以及各种情绪。伊夫·圣·洛朗(Yves Saint Laurent)曾不止一次说过,“真希望牛仔裤是我发明的。”

本文最初发表于2014年8月24日。

翻译:王相宜

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