Sailor Jerry – cool name for a cool guy. Norman Keith Collins was born on 14th January 1911 and grew up in Northern California. As a child he hopped freight trains across the country and learned tattooing from a man named “Big Mike” from Alaska; originally using the hand-pricking method.
In the late 1920s, he met Tatts Thomas from Chicago who taught him how to use a tattoo machine. He practiced on drunks brought in from Skid Row.
At age 19, Collins enlisted in the United States Navy, where he was exposed to the art and imagery of Southeast Asia. During his career as a tattoo artist, he worked as a licensed skipper of a large three-masted schooner, on which he conducted tours of the Hawaiian islands.
In addition to sailing and tattooing, he played the saxophone in his own dance band and frequently hosted his own radio show, where he was known as “Old Ironsides”
He now has a Rum named after him Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum and all the labels include his tattoo flash designs.
We recently had an opportunity to buy unique items from a Sailor Jerry pop-up bar that can be found here.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to purchase these decorative one off items that would look great in a man cave or garden bar!