In this Althistory, Ralph Waldo Emerson wakes up on the morning of April 12, 1849 to find a disturbing crease in his bangs and decides that the most prudent of solutions is to visit his local Bostonian Hat Shop.
It was on this day that, had he not been gallivanting around Back Bay tossing about bowlers like a foppish Lincoln, he would have spent the day pensively staring out of his office window whereby he would have constructed the basic argument of his seminal prose work "on self-reliance"
Fortunately, his subsequent choice of a black shiny velvet top hat would in no way hinder his later forays into the pseudo-spiritual American mysticism movement. As a side note, In another Althistory Walt Whitman idles too long at a haberdasher and Leaves of Grass is never published. Instead he publishes the moderately successful Gothic-romantic inspired book of poetry, entitled "Rows of Buttons."