The Troy Street Observer

April 11, 1960: State Cops Raid the Glass Hat!

It was an old-fashioned raid, just like the police did them during Prohibition. State police shut down the popular after-hours club, the Glass Hat, on April 11, 1960. “State Police Swoop On Nightspot Hi-Jinx,” was the page 1 headline in the Daily Record.

Photo of Jo Thompson
Jo Thompson in 1953

The Back Bay was home to one of Boston’s best-known after-hours clubs, upstairs at 336 Newbury Street. It was called the Club Vanity Fair in the late thirties and early forties when saxophonist Frank D’Avolio led the after-hours band, and the Glass Hat after that.

The Glass Hat opened in 1946 with occasional entertainers of jazz interest, such as Clarence Jackson. Good singers were the rule in the mid-1950s, like Jo Thompson from Detroit, and Dorchester’s Margie Anderson. Then in 1955, all advertising and mentions on the entertainment pages of the newspapers ceased. And it got busy after hours.

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