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Adlake (Chicago) Railroad Lamp (1907)

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Railroad Lanterns and Lamps195 of 2491935 Adlake Railroad Lamp B & O Rail Road Oil Lamp
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    Posted 11 years ago

    (16 items)

    This is an Adams and Westlake (Adlake) Railroad signal lamp. It is "farm fresh" with two cobalt blue lenses. Just enough to rust to make it authentic, but not junk.

    The hinge and clasp are intact and is on the 3 inch connector that would have attached it to the signal base. There is no fuel container or pyrex inside. I have searched recent sales and date it near 1907 based on design and other little intricacies. I hope to find a more accurate date.

    I would love some feed back from Railrodiana experts out there. I'll be glad to submit more pictures.

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    1. dshipes1 dshipes1, 11 years ago
      Thanks fellas!
    2. YardSaleDave, 11 years ago
      The cobalt lens normally signifies the use of a "car knocker' or inspectors lamp, not sure why these lenses are in a signal lamp but a cool lamp nonetheless.
    3. dshipes1 dshipes1, 11 years ago
      I appreciate that, YardSaleDave! I bought a book to try and identify it, becuase it is different from the Adlake Lamps I've seen before. The clasp is on a swivel and there are three post for the top instead of four. I know Adlake started making lamps in 1857 so if it is a very old one it makes sense that the original lenses didn't survive.
      Anything more you can offer? I'm new to this.

    4. dshipes1 dshipes1, 11 years ago
      -it has a round top like DRESSEL lamps have.
    5. Lumbar, 11 years ago
      This is most of an Adlake #169 Switch lamp probably manufactured in 1907 as earlier versions were delivered with a sheet metal bell bottom base instead of this later version cast iron base. The internal vent cone supports on the early "round top" lamps had only three straps. These were moved to the outside of the vent cone commencing in 1908. The four supports came with the square top lamp introduced 100 years ago for the 1911-12 catalog season and was referred to as them model 1112.

      Missing are the "bail" (handle,) "peep hole" glass, two lenses and their retaining rings and all hoods for all the lenses. Most importantly, the font, burner and Pyrex chimney are not present.

      PLEASE DO NOT CALL THESE LENSES COBALT! They are not accurately referred to with that antique dealer's term. These are undoubtedly Purple when lit with kerosene for which they were specifically formulated. The other colors that would also incorrectly be called "cobalt" are Blue and Lunar White, hence the inappropriateness of that term. You must use a flame (not from a cigarette lighter as that shifts the color spectrum produced) to check the actual color.

      The two lenses here are of the "spreadlight" variety which first appeared in the 1930's so could not have been originally fitted to this lamp.

      The purple indication in a switch lamp was used only on "Derails," a special device to prevent stored cars on sidings from rolling onto a mainline in the event their manually set brakes slipped.

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