Vapo Cresolene Lamp

Product code - 0499W
Sold on 31st August 2013

The first Vapo Cresolene lamp was produced in 1879. James H Valentine was desperately trying to find something to relieve his daughters whooping cough symptoms. He put a coal tar acid called Cresolene in a tin cup and suspended it over a  small kerosene lamp. The soothing vapours soon filled the room and she found relief.

Valentine was granted a patent for his lamp on August 4 1885. He began production of his medical lamps but lacked the capital to expand the market beyond the village limits. He received financial assistance from George Shepard Page and eventually sold out to Pages’ children.

It is interesting to note that the second patent date on this lamp is for 1899 rather than 1888. Most of these lamps have the August 8 1888 date but there appears to be no record of any corresponding patent for that date. Also, in 1888, August 8 was a Wednesday but patents were generally issued on Tuesdays. However, August 8 1899 was a Tuesday and there is a registered patent for Vapo-Cresolene for that date.

The lamp still has the original opal glass chimney and the tray is dulled from use. The original finish on the stand shows some paint loss but the remaining finish is also bright. All of these things are consistent with the age and usage of the Vapo Cresolene lamp.

Height – 16cm (6.25″)

Width -9cm (3.5″)

Depth -8cm (3.25″)

For more information about this antique Vapo Cresolene lamp, please feel free to contact us and quote “Product code – 0499W”

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