Monthly Archives: February 2015

Cleethorpes Jubilee Fountain

Location: Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire, England

An elaborate drinking fountain was presented to the town by the Grant family to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897. Originally located on the seafront at the intersection of the Kingsway and Market Street, it was relocated to the Brighton Street slipway in the late 1930s or early 1940s. The associated original elaborate drinking font was not re-sited, and was replaced by a single circular pedestal with fluted pillar.

In 1949, the structure was irrevocably damaged when hit by a car. It was demolished and removed. Some of the plaques were salvaged and are on display in Cleethorpes Town Hall. In 2013 the replacement pillar font was being offered for sale by Junktion Antiques.

The canopied drinking fountain is design number 20, an elaborate 18 feet by 4 feet fountain, sold by Walter Macfarlane & Co, and manufactured at the Saracen Foundry, Possilpark, Glasgow, Scotland. Seated on an octagonal tiered plinth, the open filigree canopy is supported by eight columns with griffin terminals which are positioned over capitals with foliage frieze above square bases.

The highly decorated cusped arches are trimmed with rope mouldings. Cartouches contained within each lunette offer shields for memorial: a swan, a crane, and a dedication shield. On each side arch faceplates provided a flat surface for an inscription using raised metal letters; often the useful monition, Keep the pavement dry. Civic virtues such as temperance were often extolled in inscriptions on drinking fountains.

Doves and flowers offer decorative relief on the circular, ribbed dome. The internal capitals contain flowers. The structure is surmounted with a lantern finial.

Under the canopy stands the font (design number 18.) A circular shaft, ornamented with water lilies, rests on a wide base with canted corners. Four lion jambs support four highly decorated quatrefoil basins. Rising from the centre is a pyramid shaped stanchion decorated with swan and bird decoration. A kylix-shaped lamp terminal with four consoles offer drinking cups suspended by chains.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Griffins are symbolic of guardians of priceless possessions; owls are symbolic of guardians of the afterlife, lions are symbolic of guardianship; and cranes are recognized as a symbol of vigilance.

Glossary

  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Cartouche, a structure or figure, often in the shape of an oval shield or oblong scroll, used as an architectural or graphic ornament or to bear a design or inscription
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Cusped Arch, the point of intersection of lobed or scalloped forms
  • Filigree, fine ornamental work
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Frieze, the horizontal part of a classical moulding just below the cornice, often decorated with carvings
  • Griffin, winged lion denotes vigilance and strength, guards treasure and priceless possessions
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • Kylix, a Grecian style drinking cup
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests
  • Quatrefoil, a type of decorative framework consisting of a symmetrical shape which forms the overall outline of four partially-overlapping circles of the same diameter
  • Stanchion, upright bar or post providing support
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal

D.A.R. Fountain

Location: Alexandria, VA, USA

In 1909 a proposal to erect a fountain in front of the market was introduced to the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution with the intention of supplying fresh drinking water to horses pulling carts and farmers bringing produce to market. The selected design (by Philadelphia jeweler J. E. Caldwell & Co.) incorporated one of four historical cannons that had been discovered along the Strand in 1908 during improvements to the river front.

The cannon was shipped to Philadelphia, and during construction a solid shot was discovered inside with the likelihood of gunpowder being present. This delayed construction and installation of the fountain which had been planned for April as evidenced on the dedication plaque. In fact the 7 foot 6 inch high bronze-and-iron fountain was not erected until May 6, 1912 where, at the brick intersection of Royal and Cameron streets festooned with flags and bunting, it was dedicated and welcomed with trumpeting and applause.

Three years later complaints were received that the fountain ran continuously wasting thousands of gallons of water; it had also become a place for neighbourhood youths to loiter and bang on the rim of the bowl; and the water basin was being used as a wash basin, bath tub and laundry. A petition was circulated complaining that it was a nuisance and a danger following a 1916 accident when an automobile collided with the fountain. At this point in history the bronze dolphin finial disappeared.

In 1918 an army truck hit the fountain knocking it off its pedestal and catapulting it 40 feet without additional damage to the structure. It was therefore reconnected and remained in situ until October 1919 when it was shipped to Philadelphia for repairs. Upon return it was relocated to the southwest corner of Fairfax and Cameron streets.
The fountain was totally dismantled and rebuilt in 1963. A dedication ceremony was held on June 2, 1967 when as part of the urban renewal project, it was relocated to its present location at North Royal Street.

Not a casting from an established iron foundry, this fountain is unique. The circular base with a channel has two small basins for dogs. A central base supports 4 circular pedestals with attic base and a center column created from the old cannon. A deep circular trough, 4 feet in diameter, with a lip offered water for horses. 2 demilune basins protrude from the side of the cannon. The dipper cups for drinking are missing.

2 dolphin consoles support a basin decorated with scrolls. On the west side is a dedication engraved in a shield format of scrolls and shell: Erected April 1, 1912 / By The / Mount Vernon Chapter D.A.R. / In Memory Of / The Colonial And Revolutionary / Events Of The Town Of / Alexandria Virginia. On the east side is the insignia of the D.A.R. The finial was a dolphin which spouted water into the basin and from the dolphin mouths to the demilune basins.

Glossary:
• Attic base, a column base with two rings
• Console, a decorative bracket support element
• Demilune, half moon or crescent shape
• Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
• Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue


Innerwick Jubilee Fountain and Trough

Location: Innerwick, East Lothian, Scotland

At the roadside heading west from Innerwick Village to Thurston House is a memorial drinking fountain and horse trough commissioned by Richard Hunter of Thurston to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887.

The spring fed fountain is housed in a Dutch gable end of red sandstone ashlar. Originally, it was surmounted with a globe finial which has since been lost or destroyed, due to vandalism or negligence.

On the left side of the base is an arrow shaped symbol carved into the stone. Used in ordnance survey it is known as a trig point.

A slate plaque is engraved in the gable head: A Man Of Kindness / To His Beast Is Kind / But Brutal Actions / Show A Brutal Mind / Remember! He Who Made Thee / Made The Brute / Who Gave Thee Speech And Reason / Formed Him Mute / He Can’t Complain / But God’s All-Seeing Eye / Beholds Thy Cruelty / And Hears His Cry / He Was Designed Thy Servant / Not Thy Drudge / Remember! His Creator / Is Thy Judge

The cast iron drinking fountain is number 16 (3 feet 3 inches high and 2 feet 7 inches wide) manufactured by the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow. The wall mounted drinking fountain is in the form of a round arch trimmed with highly decorated fret detail and rope moulding. The recessed interior of the arch contains a shell lunette from which a tap protrudes, and a dedication in bas-relief, VR Jubilee 1887. A single drinking cup on a chain was formerly suspended from a palmette finial.

Seated on a concave base, the animal trough contains the manufacturer’s stamp, Walter Macfarlane & Co. / Saracen Foundry / Glasgow. This trough is casting number 24 with a basin at ground level for dogs.

mtb_saracen
In the year 2000 the cast iron structures were repainted, and the trough was used as a flower planter. Although recorded as a Category B Historic Listing on 17 May 1989, the memorial has been neglected and is now overgrown.

Status per 2016

Glossary:

  • Ashlar, finely cut stone
  • Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
  • Dutch Gable (also known as Flemish gable), a gable whose sides have a shape made up of one or more curves
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fret, running or repeated ornament
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Palmette, a decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree

Harwich Town Railway Station

Location: Harwich, Essex, England

Leading from West Street is the approach road to Harwich Town Railway Station. The drinking fountain which is located in a triangular area of grass is maintained by the Harwich Society.

This octagonal shaped drinking fountain is seated on an octagonal plinth. The ogee shaped base and acroter support a single pillar with attic base and inset arched panels. Entablature with bolt consoles sit beneath an ogee cupola with alternate panels of fleur de lys motif. The structure is surmounted with an acorn shaped finial.

A demilune basin with a chain for suspended cup offered water to humans and at ground level was a basin for dogs. A plaque identifies the manufacturer, Manufactured by George Smith & Co., Sun Foundry, Glasgow.

It was recorded as a Grade II listed building on 18 April 1994.

Glossary

  • Acroter, flat base
  • Attic base, a column base with two rings
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Cupola, a small, domed structure on top of a roof.
  • Demilune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Entablature, moldings and bands which lie horizontally above columns
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Ogee, curve with a concave

Le Cinque Lampade Fountain

Location: Leith Walk, Edinburgh, Scotland

There were five streets at the Foot of Leith Walk: Duke Street; Great Junction Street; Constitution Street; Kirkgate and Leith Walk. In this location there was a drinking fountain with five ornamental lamps. The area was known by the Italian community as Le Cinque Lampade.

Circa 1891. Copyright City of Edinburgh Council. Source: www.capitalcollections.org.uk

Circa 1891. Copyright City of Edinburgh Council. Source: http://www.capitalcollections.org.uk

Copyright City of Edinburgh Council. Source: www.capitalcollections.org.uk

Copyright City of Edinburgh Council. Source: http://www.capitalcollections.org.uk

The casting, manufactured by McDowall, Steven & Co.’s Milton Works in Glasgow, was removed and many nearby buildings demolished to build North British Railways’ Leith Central Station which was completed in 1903. There was a belief that perhaps the structure was at the Dalton Scrap Metal Merchant on Constitution Street in Leith, but this has been refuted by the company. It is quite possible that this ‘lost’ fountain was melted during World War II to supply armaments for the war effort.

Circa 1900.  Copyright City of Edinburgh Council. Source: www.capitalcollections.org.uk

Circa 1900. Copyright City of Edinburgh Council. Source: http://www.capitalcollections.org.uk

The drinking fountain supplied fresh water to animals and humans. It was seated on a rectangular stone plinth. A square base housed small demilune basins at ground level for dogs, and four large quatrefoil basins for horses. The highly decorated stanchion and central column were decorated with acanthus and floral relief. Lion masks, a symbol of guardianship, spouted water from which humans drank using metal cups suspended on consoles. A dolphin, symbolizing guardians of water, flanked each side of the stanchion. The base of the lamp column contained 4 mascarons crowned with a shell motif. The Corinthian column supported a central lantern with four additional lanterns on elaborate palmette consoles. The six sided glass pane lanterns were capped with a ball and spike finial.

Glossary:

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Column Corinthian, a fluted shaft with flowers and leaves at the capital.
  • Demilune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Palmette, a decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.
  • Quatrefoil, a type of decorative framework consisting of a symmetrical shape which forms the overall outline of four partially-overlapping circles of the same diameter
  • Stanchion, upright bar or post providing support

A similar lamp structure was located at the junction of Princes Street and Waverley Bridge. It was most likely removed when electricity was introduced, and with the advent of the motor vehicle it would have been an obstacle.


Caldbeck Memorial Fountain

Location: The Square, Portlaw, County Waterford, Ireland

19th century Portlaw claimed to be one of the best laid-out industrial villages in Ireland with wide streets radiating from a central square. In 1887, a drinking fountain was erected in Market Square outside the former Post Office in remembrance of William Robert Caldbeck, a local postmaster, weighing scales operator and shopkeeper, who died on 5th February 1887.

Circa 1887. Source: Facebook/Portlaw Heritage Centre

Circa 1887. Source: Facebook/Portlaw Heritage Centre

Although local information states that the fountain was cast in the Mayfield Foundry this is unlikely, as the structure is a customized design by Walter Macfarlane’s manufactured at the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow. It was probably shipped unassembled and constructed in the local foundry.

The fountain is constructed of font number 18, a wide base in the form of a Greek cross with canted corners. Four lion jambs support four elaborately decorated quatrefoil basins.

2005

2005

The fountain is constructed of font number 18, a wide base in the form of a Greek cross with canted corners. Four lion jambs support four elaborately decorated quatrefoil basins.

The stanchion and central column are decorated with acanthus and floral relief. The circular shaft (design number 32) offers two shields for dedications: Erected / by many friends / in memory of / William Robert Caldbeck /who died / 5th February / 1887, and four consoles from which drinking cups were suspended on chains.

Used with permission, Sean O’Brien. Source: http://www.portlaw.info/

The capital supports a single ringed column with a base of four griffin feet used as a transition piece to allow for the addition of lamp pillar number 6 with lantern number 220. Decorative yoke maintenance arms sit below a round globe originally lit by gas. The finial is a spike.

Used with permission, Sean O’Brien. Source: http://www.portlaw.info/

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Lions are symbolic of guardianship, and griffins represent guardians of priceless possessions.

The original location of the fountain was in the street outside the post office at Market Square. It was housed in a shallow circular recess trimmed with rope detail. The shallow recess served two purposes: to prevent water overflow from soaking the street, and to prevent accidental bumping of the structure by carts, bicycles, etc.

Circa 1887. Used with permission. National Library of Ireland

Circa 1887. Used with permission. National Library of Ireland

In 1990 the fountain was moved to the centre of the Square, renamed Malcolmson Square in 2005, (the Malcolmson family were the founders of Portlaw and the nearby cotton mill at Mayfield.)

National Inventory of Archictural Heritage. Source: http://www.buildingsofireland.ie/niah/search.jsp?type=record&county=WA&regno=22803037

National Inventory of Archictural Heritage. Source: http://www.buildingsofireland.ie/

During restoration the pump mechanisms were found to be intact. The main part of the structure was installed in a circular pond in the Square in September 2009. It is seated on a Greek cross stone plinth to keep the cast iron structure above water level. A replacement lamp using electric light was installed in 2010 to complete the restoration.

Many thanks to Sean O’Brien who gave me valuable assistance.

Glossary

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Greek cross, a cross with arms of equal length
  • Griffin, winged lion denotes vigilance and strength, guards treasure and priceless possessions
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests
  • Quatrefoil, a type of decorative framework consisting of a symmetrical shape which forms the overall outline of four partially-overlapping circles of the same diameter
  • Stanchion, an upright bar or post providing support
  • Yoke maintenance arms, the bars near the top of a street light which supported the lamplighter’s ladder

James Beatton Memorial Fountain

Location: Port Augusta, SA, Australia

James Beatton, who marked 50 years as an officer of the State and Commonwealth, was Postmaster of Port Augusta for 24 years before retiring in 1904. A testimonial to this event was in the planning stages when he died in 1905. A decision to create a lasting tribute was agreed, and donations for a memorial drinking fountain were made by the public.

As a mark of esteem by the community, the memorial was erected at the wharf end of Commercial Road. Mayor T. Hewitson turned on the fountain and declared it open for public use on 6 July 1906. The fountain was relocated in the 1930s to Gladstone Square.

The structure is a casting by Stewart & Harley’s Sun Foundry of Adelaide. It originally stood on a rectangular plinth surrounded by a cement post fence.

The capitals of four decorated columns with square base, partly fluted shaft and palmette terminals unite with a corona of entwined palmette scrollwork. Central to the Gothic arches, a stanchion supports an ascending spike and orb finial and a descending inverted finial. The font is an octagonal pedestal with large decorated basin from the centre of which there was originally a column with a domed terminal supporting metal cups for drinking. This has since been replaced with a bubbler. A small basin for dogs is visible at ground level.

The font bears the inscription: Erected / To The Memory / Of / James Beatton / For 24 Years Postmaster / Of This Town/ Died November 25th, 1905.

The memorial fountain was recorded on the South Australia Heritage Register on 24 July 1980.

Glossary:

  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Corona, Open framework in shape of a crown
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fluted Shaft, a long rounded groove decorating the shaft of a column Palmette
  • Gothic arch, a pointed arch
  • Palmette, a decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Stanchion, upright bar or post providing support
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal