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Old Railroad Lamp?

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Posted 6 years ago


(1 item)

I recently unpacked this family lamp and am looking for a place to hang it. My father told me it came from a rail road coach. It has 40 crystal pendants, a hand painted shade, and it's height is adjustable by at least 1-1/2 feet via a rotatory cast iron mechanism in the ceiling plate. The pat'd date is August 1885. He electrified it in the '50's. What value should I insure it for if any?


  1. JohannB JohannB, 6 years ago
    This is a very nice kerosene lamp. It would have hung in a Victorian parlor. If it were to hang in a rail car, it would swing too much and would get damaged. Also, it would hang too low for the ceiling in a rail car. This would be for household use. The type of family that could afford this in 1885 would have been upper middle class. What makes it desirable is the the "jewels" set in the frame. Collectors tend to spend more money for the "over the top" Victorian furnishings. I noticed that it seems that nothing was drilled and the electrical wire enters the burner and not the font. That is good, because many collectors want to change it back to kerosene. The finish on the canopy is called "Japaning" or "Japaned" I don't know why. The shade appears to be period. I would say that, at auction, you would expect $250.00-$500.00. Retail, you would see it in a shop or gallery for around $800.00 plus. Insurance should easily be $800.00. If you go to one similar to yours, but inferior, that sold for $250.00. On eBay they tend to go higher than at live auctions. I hope that helps. As far as who made it, many companies made these, so you would need to find the exact one in a catalogue and even then there was a lot of copying. Today, there are a lot of repro's out there, but yours looks all period.
  2. neat.old.stuff neat.old.stuff, 4 years ago
    very nice light

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