In 1873, when fifteen-year-old Chester Greenwood was ice skating near his home in Farmington, Massachusetts, his ears kept getting cold. He thought, if he could keep his ears warm, skating would be more enjoyable. A scarf was too bulky and awkward.

Chester came up with a great idea. He had his grandmother sew fur onto wire that would fit around his head to cover his ears. Earmuffs were born.

Chester obtained a U.S. patent for his invention in 1877

Eventually he set up a business for manufacturing ear muffs. Farmington become Earmuff Capital of the World.

In 1977 Maine’s legislature declared December 21 to be Chester Greenwood Day:

“December 21st of each year shall be designated as Chester Greenwood Day and the Governor shall annually issue a proclamation inviting and urging the people of the state of Maine to observe this day in suitable places with appropriate ceremony and activity. Chester Greenwood Day shall commemorate and honor Chester Greenwood, whose inventive genius and native ability which contributed much to the enjoyment of Maine’s winter season, marked him as one of Maine’s outstanding citizens.”


It’s now celebrated the first Saturday of December every year. Does anyone reading this know why the change from December 21?