Brattleboro Drinking Fountain/Horse Trough

Location: Brattleboro, Vermont, USA

A cast iron drinking fountain for the use of man and beast was erected on the corner of Main Street and High Street in July 1872. It was located near the old oak tree in the hope that the water source would discourage the consumption of beer and alcohol. In 1875 complaints that there was little water flow may have been the reason that its usage declined.

Photographic evidence reveals that the fountain was still in place in 1907. The date when it was replaced with a fire hydrant is unknown as is the fate of the fountain.

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The manufacturer of the cast iron octagonal pedestal fountain which offered a supply of drinking water to humans, horses and smaller animals is unknown. Inset arched panels and rosettes decorated the pedestal. A fluted, recessed, demi-lune basin with a cup suspended on a chain offered a drinking receptacle for humans. On the opposite side a fluted trough was offered for the refreshment of horses. Water flowed from lion mascarons into the horse trough and the small fluted demi-lune basin situated at ground level for the convenience of dogs.

same model

This fountain in San Francisco is the same model but manufacturer is unknown

Glossary:

  • Demilune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Fluted, a long rounded groove
  • 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
  • Rosette, a round stylized flower design

 

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