Monthly Archives: April 2015

Charlottesville Fountain

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia, USA

During the late 19th century, the City of Charlottesville erected four drinking fountains in the downtown area. One of the fountains was located at the Midway School and was still in existence in 1917 (the Lewis & Clark monument now stands in this location).

Circa 1917 Midway School Source: holsinger photographs UVA library

Circa 1917 Midway School
Source: holsinger photographs UVA library

Another drinking fountain which stood outside the Courthouse on Jefferson Street was removed when the Monticello Hotel was built in 1926. It was restored and installed outside the Courthouse in 2004.

cville_court Sq

A marker placed in paving stones on the ground relates the history of the fountains. During the late 1800’s, the City of Charlottesville installed four watering fountains in the downtown area. The fountains were designed to provide water to the citizens, their horses and other domesticated animals. Water was provided by the City water system and fed through four fish-like features to the upper bowl. The overflow then filled the lower trough for smaller animals. A fountain similar to this one once stood in front of the courthouse on Jefferson Street and was removed at the time the Monticello hotel was built in 1926. Through combined efforts of the Charlottesville Volunteer Fire Company and the City of Charlottesville, this fountain, one of the original four, was restored to this location in November 2004.

 

The structure stands on an octagonal plinth. A fluted circular moulding creates a trough at ground level for the use of dogs. The fluted pedestal with attic base rising from the center of the trough hosts an arched panel containing a dedication, Erected 1892 and the legend, Patented / June 8, 1880.

A second panel contains the image of a woman in bas-relief. She is dressed in classical robes raising a cup/bowl in her right hand and a pitcher in her left hand.

The manufacturer’s name is visible, Henry F. Jenks / Pawtucket, R.I.

The capital which supports a large basin 56 inches in diameter, and capable of holding 100 gallons, is decorated with bas-relief fret. It is 4 feet 3 inches above ground level and was originally used by horses. A central jamb of 4 dolphins spouts water into the basin with the overflow falling to the trough below. The pipes within the fountain were constructed to resist freezing in cold temperatures.

The finial is highly decorated with floriated relief and a studded band terminating in a globe with the same detail as the basin.

Glossary:

  • Attic base, a column base with two rings
  • Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • 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
  • Fret, running or repeated ornament
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.
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Diamond Jubilee Drinking Fountain

Location: Yeadon, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England

Thomas Brown, owner of Kirk Lane Mills in Yeadon, was a local benefactor who donated funds to build the Town Hall. In his will, he directed the planting of 300 trees along Killinghill Road (renamed Victoria Avenue), and the purchase of a drinking fountain to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897. The directors of the Yeadon Water Works Company agreed to supply water free of charge during the term of their office.

The opening of Victoria Avenue, and the dedication of the Jubilee Drinking fountain took place on 8th January 1898 following a procession along the High Street. The fountain was erected at the intersection of Yeadon High Street and Victoria Avenue, now known as the Fountain Cross Roads.

In 1944 the fountain was irreparably damaged and removed. Its whereabouts are unknown. It may have been recycled for armaments during the war.

A stone marker was erected by Aireborough Civic Society in 1997 at the original site of the fountain. A plaque is inscribed with the following legend. Near This Site Stood / Yeadon Fountain / (Erected 1897) / Airborough Civic / Society / 1997

 leodis2

Used by kind permission of Leeds Library and Information Services, www.leodis.net

Used by kind permission of Leeds Library and Information Services, http://www.leodis.net

There is only one very blurred photograph of the fountain available which was font casting number 18, manufactured at Walter Macfarlane’s Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, Scotland. The 6 feet 2 inches casting specifications had a wide base in the form of a St. Andrew’s cross with canted corners, on which was set a circular shaft, ornamented with water lilies. Four lion jambs supported four highly decorated quatrefoil basins. Rising from the centre was a stanchion decorated with swans and cranes on alternating sides. A kylix-shaped vase terminal with four projecting tendrils offered drinking cups suspended by chains. A small trough for dogs was located at the base of the font.

Saracen_Font_18

A dedication shield on the front of the fountain was salvaged and is now located above the booking office in the Town Hall. This Fountain Was Given And / The Trees Along This Road Were Planted / And Given To The Urban / District Council For The District Of / Yeadon / By / Mrs. E. Brown Of Mount Cross Bramley / To Form An Avenue Called Victoria Avenue / In Memory Of Her Late Husband / Thomas Brown Of Mount Cross Bramley / And Kirk Lane Mills / Yeadon / Also To Commemorate The Diamond Jubilee / Of Her Most Gracious Majesty / Queen Victoria / 1897

Glossary

  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • Kylix, a Grecian style drinking cup
  • 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

 


Overtoun Drinking Well

Location: Overtoun, Greenock, Inverclyde, Scotland

Within the moorland of Inverclyde is the Greenock Cut, a narrow aqueduct channelling water from the hills into the city. At the east end of the aqueduct at Overtoun, the cut passes under a bridge. On the west side is a cast iron drinking fountain and two plaques which commemorate the centenary of the cut created in 1827.

The fountain was cast by Glenfield and Kennedy of Kilmarnock. It consists of a single pedestal with a fluted demi-lune basin. The scroll backplate was embellished with floral bas-relief and a lion mascaron. Above the lion mask a circle held the inscription of the foundry, Glenfield Kennedy Limited Kilmarnock. A medallion with rope moulding contained a central push button which released water from the lion mask. A drinking cup was originally suspended by a chain.

Glossary:

  • Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Mask/Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Medallion, a circular device bearing a portrait or relief moulding
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue

 


Hebe Fountain

Location: Roseburg, Oregon, USA

The temperance movement which began in the early 19th century advocated moderation in alcohol consumption. The belief that alcohol was responsible for many of society’s ills made this social movement popular around the world. In Roseburg, the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, and the Mental Culture Club now known as the Roseburg’s Women’s Club, donated a fountain to the city as an alternative to quenching thirsts in saloons.

The 12 foot high fountain surmounted by a statue of Hebe was erected on the corner of Cass Avenue and Main St. contrary to the Mayor’s concern that it would be a traffic hazard. It was dedicated on September 30, 1908 and provided water for horses and dogs in addition to humans. Four years later the Mayor was proven correct when a team of runaway horses pulling a wagon crashed into the fountain toppling the statue. The fountain was removed and the statue lost.

In 2002 during planning of the restoration of historic Roseburg Town Center the Park Commission recommended that a replica of the fountain be placed in Eagles Park. Fundraising by a local group assisted in the erection of the fountain in the park on Jackson Street. It was dedicated on 30 September 2007 and unveiled by Roseburg Mayor Larry Rich who took the first drink from the fountain.

The original structure cast by J. L. Mott Iron Works was seated on a square base with pilasters on each corner. Two small demi-lune basins were located at ground level for the use of dogs, and at the front was a large trough to accommodate horses. The bas-relief enrichment on the trough was also displayed on the three base panels. The pedestal contained four inset panels with lion mascarons, and on three sides were demi-lune basins for human use. The terminal was a statue of Hebe, classically dressed, holding a pitcher at her right side and a cup in her raised left hand.

A plaque with legend relating the history of the ‘Hebe’ fountain is at the rear of the current structure.

Glossary:

  • Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal

 


Clifton Down Fountain

Location: Bristol, England

Located on Sion Hill at the junction of Gloucester Row and Observatory Road this drinking fountain was erected in 1866. It can be found on the south side of Clifton down near the suspension bridge.

Seated on a two tiered square granite plinth, drinking fountain number 8 from Walter Macfarlane & Co.’s catalogue was manufactured at the Saracen Foundry at Possilpark in Glasgow, the most prolific architectural iron founders in the world. The structure is 9 feet 6 inches high and consists of four columns, from the capitals of which consoles with griffin terminals unite with arches formed of decorated mouldings.

On each side, rope moulded cartouches within each lunette host images with arched faceplates containing inscriptions using raised metal letters. The coat of arms of the City and County of Bristol with its Latin motto Virtute Et Industria, translated as By Virtue And Industry, contains an inscription stating: Jesu, Like Streams From God Thy Spirit Give. This legend is also shown above a shield containing a cockle shell and the initials MCB. The third and fourth sides of the fountain contain the same Bible quotation i.e. Coming To Thee That We May Drink And Live. Amen. Jn XV 26 & VII.37. The third shield contains an inscription, To The Glory Of God In The Use Of Man & Beast; and the fourth shield displays a handshake accompanied by the phrase, The Receiver To The Givers Ever So We May Go. The structure is surmounted by an open filigree dome, the finial being a crown with a pattée cross.

Under the canopy there was originally a font (casting number 7) 5 foot 8 inches high. The basin which had a scalloped edge and decorative relief was supported by a single decorative pedestal with four pilasters and four descending salamanders, a symbol of courage and bravery. A central urn with four consoles offered drinking cups suspended by chains. The terminal was a crane. A small basin at ground level was available for the use of dogs.The font was later (circa 1980) replaced with a bubbler type fountain which no longer exists.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Griffins are symbolic of guardians of priceless possessions, salamanders display bravery and courage that cannot be extinguished by fire, and cranes are recognized as a symbol of vigilance.

The structure was recorded as a British listed building, category Grade II, on 4 March 1977.

Glossary

  • 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
  • Filigree, fine ornamental work
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fret, running or repeated ornament
  • Griffin, winged lion denotes vigilance and strength, guards treasure and priceless possessions
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Pattée cross, a cross with arms that narrow at the centre and flare out at the perimeter
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal

Carter Memorial Fountain

Location: Ashland, Oregon, USA

This memorial drinking fountain on Main Street East was donated to the city of Ashland by family members in honor of Henry and Harriet Carter, an Iowa couple who settled in the city and founded the Bank of Ashland. It was dedicated in 1910 and is a principal feature of the Downtown Historic District which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The fountain containing a 12 foot pedestal and a 5 ft. 4 in. statue was manufactured by J. L. Mott Iron Works and sat on a double tiered rectangular plinth. A large square base contains a small well for dogs on all four sides at ground level, and a trough which surrounds the pedestal. On four sides, there is a lunette containing a lion mask within armoria, flanked by acanthus. A column extends above with fleur de lys armoria, laurel frieze and two consoles bearing globe lanterns. As seen in photographic evidence, the lanterns changed shape possibly with the introduction of electricity. The current lamps reflect the original globe style. The capital supports a statue representing a pioneer holding a downward facing flintlock rifle in the crook of his right arm whilst shading his eyes with his left hand. Originally his right leg was relaxed whilst the left leg bore the weight of his stance (this stance is called contrapposto). The statue was nicknamed Iron Mike, and contrary to this nickname, it was actually made of a zinc alloy.

The fountain and the statue have suffered numerous instances of vandalism and damage. The plumbing was damaged in 1932 when the structure was hit by a car. An electric fault from an underground cable in 2013 caused a power outage in downtown Ashland and created a light show as sparks flew out of the top of the statue. ‘Iron Mike’ has been vandalised several times by people compelled to climb the fountain. He has fallen to the ground causing breaks in the leg, arm and gun. His right arm has been ripped off twice, and his hand and gun which recently went missing were found several blocks away.

Repairs which were made in the 1980s to his leg also changed his stance so that both feet are now flat on the pedestal. Ashland Forge reattached the gun in 2002; and in 2008, the statue was discoloured by flames when a man climbed the statue and burned an American flag to protest the Iraq War. The damage and repairs have had a cumulative effect of weakening the statue and cracks have appeared on the leg, knee and foot. The 105 year old statue was removed from the fountain in 2014 to evaluate the cost of restoration.

Glossary

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Armoria, shield, coat of arms, crest
  • Capital, The top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Console, A decorative bracket support element
  • Contrapposto, stance where one leg bears the weight and the other leg is relaxed
  • Frieze, The horizontal part of a classical entablature just below the cornice, often decorated with carvings
  • Lunette, The half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Plinth, Flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.

Golden Horse Fountain

Location: Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada

This drinking fountain is known as the Golden Horse Fountain and also the Milton Fountain. It stands at the intersection of Vancouver, Water, Main and Chestnut streets in the Milton suburb of Yarmouth.

When the fountain was originally erected on 20th May, 1893 in the centre of Main Street near the trolley tracks, the horse faced north. However, to allow for the widening of Main Street, the structure was moved 50 feet to the west which resulted in the horse facing east.

The drinking fountain was donated to the town by Clara Killam, the daughter of Samuel Killam, a wealthy shipping magnate. Clara selected Clara selected casting number 310-k with the statue of a trotting horse from the catalog of J.L. Mott Iron Works, New York.

The 11 feet high structure consists of a single granite pedestal with attic base and canted corners surmounted by a bronze statue of a prancing horse. Two demi-lune fluted basins for human consumption were located on the east and west sides of the fountain. A continual water flow was supplied from Lake George. Drinking cups attached to chains were filled from dolphin mascaron spouts. The overflow of water from the basins fed the horse and cattle troughs on the north and south sides, and the four smaller basins on each corner supplied refreshment to smaller animals. Panels on each side are made from iron and are elaborately detailed with ornamentation. On the south side, a brass plate bears the following inscription: Presented / To / Milton Yarmouth / By / Clara Killam /, May 1, 1893.

plaque

In the early 20th century, the advent of automobiles decreased the need for watering horses, and the fountain no longer became an important feature. Faucets were replaced by a push button to restrict water flow and the cups were removed.

townofyarmouth_mask

Throughout its history, the fountain has been damaged and defaced accidentally and purposefully. One of the dolphin masks, blown off in August 1922 by a home-made bomb, was replaced. Collisions with vehicular traffic caused minor damage, and in 1961 during a snow storm, a snow plough struck the fountain causing the statue to topple from the base and smash into pieces. The horse was saved from the town dump by the town engineer who hired the Lunenburg Foundry to reassemble the pieces. This was accomplished with steel plates and hundreds of stainless steel screws. The statue was then returned to Yarmouth and remounted on the fountain.

1940s

1940s

Many pranks have done damage to the statue by riding the horse, snapping its ears off, and defacing it with spray paint. An annual tradition for School of Nursing graduates was the decoration of the horse using straw hats, feed bags, and bandages. In 1986 when the ears were broken off, cracks were discovered in the horse’s limbs and it was once again sent to Lunenburg for repair. A dividing island now offers slightly more protection from vehicular traffic.

The structure was recognized as an historic place in 1984 and listed on the Canadian Register of Historic Places on 27 February 2007. Today, the structure is seated on an octagonal plinth, and the monument is no longer used as a drinking fountain. Flowers growing in the font are planted by the Milton Improvement Society with annual maintenance of the structure funded by the Town of Yarmouth.

Glossary

  • Attic base, a column base with two rings
  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.