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Lamp Font - Pressed Cable and Ring Pattern

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Artifact Description

Three individual glass lamp fonts were recovered from the SS Republic wreck site, including one example pressed in the "Cable and Ring" pattern, popular for a number of years spanning the time from the use of whale oil to fluid to kerosene. This pattern features six vertical lengths of cable with a ring around each. A six-pointed star was pressed between each cable length below the upper horizontal cable band. The stem and foot of the font have broken off from the original piece and it's missing its metal burner. The stem or peg would probably have been attached to a metal connector to either a glass base or metal standard with a marble base-as seen on contemporary lamps that survive today. Lamps such as this were often used for heat, with period examples featuring teapots placed atop the lamp burner.

Similar lamps pressed in the "Cable and Ring" pattern are attributed to the Boston & Sandwich Glass company of (Sandwich) Massachusetts, which very likely also manufactured the
Republic example. The pressed pattern is thought to have been the invention of this particular firm and is seen on glass fragments excavated from the site of the former glass works. Research suggests the "Cable and Ring" design was symbolic of the strong rope or chain used to retain a vessel at anchor, especially relevant to the Sandwich seaside community that depended heavily on the sea. Rope and chain cables were advertised for sale in the Cape Cod newspapers dating back to the 1830's. 

Other Details

H: 15.8cm

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