A cowboy’s hat is one of his most distinguishing features. The broad-brimmed hat is immediately obvious to anyone who has seen it once before as a symbol of the ranching frontier. The hat protects the wearer’s head, face, and neck from the sun’s heat and glare. It keeps the rain out of his eyes. Held down with a stampede string, it protects against freezing weather. In short, the hat helped keep the cowboy from frying or freezing, depending on the whims of the weather.