PORTLAND – A longtime Old Port barber was recognized by Portland's City Council Monday night for "keeping several generations of Portland men looking good."
Robert K. Mitton Sr. opened Bob's Barber Shop in 1959. The shop remains one of the city's oldest continuously operated businesses, a fact that the city wanted to honor.
Mitton sold the business in November and retired. Bob's is still open but under new ownership.
Councilors issued a proclamation in Mitton's honor, saying he loved his work and never missed a day, working six days a week and 12 hours a day to support his family. The proclamation said Mitton served a large and varied clientele ranging from governors and congressmen to fishermen and carpenters.
When he opened the barber shop, Mitton charged $1 for a haircut. In recent years, he started charging $10. Councilors said he became a role model and inspiration for a new generation of hair cutters and stylists.
Mitton served in the U.S. Air Force, attending barber school on the GI Bill. He adorned his shop with armed forces memorabilia.