Location: Kennett Square, PA, U.S.A.
The fountain was erected in July 1892 in front of the old Borough Hall which was demolished in 1905 and replaced with the Firemen’s Auditorium. The fountain was removed in 1921 due to declining horse traffic possibly related to the popularity of the railroad and the introduction of the automobile. The location became a parking lot in 1965 and is now the home of the Franklin Center.
The drinking fountain was mounted on a square block at the edge of the street with a small basin for dogs. Three square panels at the base contained bas-relief of a Naiad, and to the fourth was attached a trough for horses which jutted into the street. The highly ornamented trough was supported by two short pilasters decorated with acanthus. A horse head mascaron protruded above the trough to deliver water to thirsty horses. A panel beneath the spout was inscribed with the words “Humanity” and “Compassion”.
A tall pedestal was decorated with floral design inlaid into panels on each side. A tin cup on a chain for use by humans was suspended on the side facing the Auditorium. It would appear from photographs that there is no spigot or basin visible for human use, which leads to the assumption that the drinking vessel was intended to be filled from the horse head spout. The acroter with chamfered edge terminated with an open vase/urn.
The manufacturer is unknown although the structure contains features common to both J. W. Fiske & Company of New York City and J. L. Mott Iron Works Company of New York.
- Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
- Acroter, flat base
- Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
- Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
- Naiad, a female water nymph who guarded fountains, wells, and other bodies of fresh water.
- Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
- Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure
- Spigot, a device that controls the flow of liquid