Category Archives: Memorial Drinking Fountain

Aberdare’s Jubilee Fountain

Location: Aberdare, Wales

A drinking fountain donated by Sir W. T. Lewis was installed at Commercial Place to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee (60 years) of Queen Victoria who was the head of a realm of 450 million people stretching across every continent.

The fountain was officially dedicated on 18 November 1897 by the wife of Sir William Lewis. It was a grand affair with bunting, drooping swags and flags decorating the area of Commercial Place. Members of the Aberdare District Council, tradesmen and the Aberdare Male Voice Choir were in attendance. Lady Lewis was presented with an inscribed gold cup from which she drank the first cup of water from the fountain. In honour of the occasion the area was renamed Victoria Square.

The structure most likely became obsolete due to advances in sanitation and the advent of the motor vehicle. It is believed it was stored in the council yard from which it disappeared.

Many ornamental iron decorations were destroyed after being requisitioned during the Second World War, as raw material for the war industries and to boost public morale. In Britain, the ill-considered scheme resulted in the unnecessary destruction of much of Britain’s ornamental street furniture, as the material was mostly unsuitable for use in manufacturing munitions and was consequently consigned to rust away in scrap yards around the country.

1890 flickr

1900 Facebook

Circa 1900

This cast iron structure manufactured by the Coalbrookdale Iron Company was seated on a rectangular plinth with rounded edges, and consisted of a trough with a drinking fountain centerpiece. A font centrally positioned split the trough into two animal trenches decorated with floral lunettes on panels.

A step to assist children was positioned beneath a demi-lune font on each side of the structure. A lion mascaron within a lunette spouted a continual flow of water into the basin which was then directed to the small troughs below for the use of dogs.

A bust of Queen Victoria was situated within four Corinthian columns with attic base extending from short pedestals with floral decoration. Directly above the abacus was a central fluted lamp pillar with two entwined dolphins at the base surmounted with a glass globe illuminated by a gas mantle.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Lions were acknowledged as guardians and dolphins are guardians of all things water related.

Glossary

  • Abacus, at the top of a capital, a thick rectangular slab of stone that serves as the flat, broad surface
  • Attic base, a column base with two rings
  • Corinthian columns, a fluted shaft with flowers and leaves at the capital
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Fluted, a long rounded groove
  • Gas Mantle, a fibrous bag impregnated with minerals which offered a bright white light from a small flame.
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Mask/Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal
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Soldier’s Monument Fountain

Location: Weirs Beach, New Hampshire, USA

Loammi Bean, aged 37 years, left his home at Nestledown Farm in 1861 to fight with the Eighth New Hampshire Volunteers in the Civil War. He was one of the first men killed with the 8th Regiment at the Battle of Georgia Landing, Louisiana, on October 27, 1862.

A memorial combination drinking fountain and horse trough was donated to the town by Nellie Bean Zebley of New York to honour her father. It was located near the railway station in an area currently known as Lakeside Avenue (this area was used by Civil War veterans as a summer camp and became the New Hampshire Veterans Association Campground). The structure surmounted by the statue of a soldier was dedicated on August 29, 1894 in the presence of the Eighth New Hampshire Volunteer Regiment Association.

In a speech to the many dignitaries and spectators in attendance Mrs. Zebley stated;
“…It is now nearly thirty years since the smoke of battle passed away and those who were left of our brave soldiers returned to their different homes, to parents, wives, children and sweethearts. But, alas, my father was left in an unknown grave….

…My father’s memory has always been sacred to me and to see you all here today makes me proud to think my father was your comrade and with you he rallied around the old flag. To erect this fountain to my father’s memory and present it to the 8th New Hampshire has been one of my happiest anticipations. It is yours, and intended to be a monument to the brave boys of New Hampshire. May God bless you all and may it be my pleasure to meet the veterans, one and all, for many years to come.” Laconia Democrat, Friday August 31, 1894.

The fountain was moved 40 or 50 feet to the east circa 1924. It is unclear whether it was relocated prior to or due to the great Weirs Beach fire on Nov. 9, 1924 that destroyed the nearby 3rd Regiment Building and a dozen other structures including the New Hotel Weirs. To read more of this devastating fire, http://weirsbeach.com/reasons-to-visit/history/golden-era/weirs-fire-1924/.

On July 23, 1931 the statue was destroyed by a lightning strike as reported by the Laconia Citizen; “…the head of the soldier was severed from the body, and shortly after the entire statue toppled into the street. Only one leg of the cast iron figure was left standing. Spectators availed themselves of the opportunity of collecting an arm, a hand or some portion of the statue. The head has disappeared, and just who added that to his collection, is not known.”

Reports identify the shattering and disappearance of the statue and the bronze dedication plaque; however, there is no information whether the fountain was also destroyed, or removed sometime later due to redundancy. In 1978 a local Warren couple discovered the plaque in the cellar of their property. It now resides in the Goss Reading Room in the Lakeport Library as part of an exhibit highlighting the monument and its history.

The cast iron structure manufactured by J. L. Mott Iron Works was seated on an octagonal base with chamfered corners. Four small basins at ground level allowed dogs to drink. Two large fluted troughs to quench the thirst of horses and cattle alternated with two demi-lune fluted basins for human consumption. Anchored adjacent to the basin were drinking cups suspended on chains which were filled from dolphin mascaron spouts (dolphins are symbolic of guardians of water).

A second tier of panels displayed cartouches containing an orb surrounded by flourish. The capital supported four panels bound with highly decorated pilasters. Three sides displayed the orb design and a fourth contained an inscription of the dedication; Presented To The City / By Mrs. John F. Zebley / In Memory Of / Her Father / Loammi Bean / Eight Regiment N.H. Vols. / Killed In Battle / At Tigonsville, LA / October 27th 1862.

6post-lhmslpl

Used with permission. Source: http://www.laconiahistorical.org/

The structure was surmounted by the statue of a Civil War soldier standing contrapposto. Leaning on a rifle-musket, he rested his hands on the barrel of the weapon.

Glossary

  • 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.
  • Chamfer, a beveled edge
  • Contrapposto, stance where one leg bears the weight and the other leg is relaxed
  • Demi-lune, 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
  • Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure

Thank you for visiting my blog.  As of 2019 the database is approaching 400 posts identifying cast iron drinking fountains located around the world. To search for a specific item use the Search Box by entering a relevant detail e.g. city, memorial name, etc. The blog can also be searched using the Category Box which offers a search by country, foundry, historic registers, etc.


Wall Inset Models – Saracen #17

Location: Eire and England

The font, casting number 17 (4’5” x 2’10”) from Walter Macfarlane’s catalogue, was manufactured by the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, Scotland. The design utilizes features of the canopy used in drinking fountain number 8, and is surmounted by a palmette finial. Griffin terminals flank a highly decorated arch outlined with rope detail which also encircles a medallion hosting the image of a crane. The recessed interior of the arch contains a shell lunette from which a tap protruded. A single drinking cup on a chain was originally suspended above a fluted demi-lune basin.

Sometimes, no matter how much I research, there is little information available online. Such is the case with the following drinking fountains.

The fountain at Athlone Railway Station in Ireland has been neglected as evidenced by rust and the missing medallion.

A pair of drinking fountains set into the wall at Viking Bay in Broadstairs, Kent, England, also show rust. The crane medallion is still in place.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Griffins are symbolic of guardians of priceless possessions, and cranes, recognized as a symbol of vigilance, are often depicted standing on one leg while holding a stone in the claws of the other foot. Legend states that if the watchful crane fell asleep the stone would fall and waken the bird.

broadstairs_geograph paul harrop

Creative commons license, Paul Harrop. Source: http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/5535723

The following examples are the same model; however, the medallion has been customized.

A drinking fountain embedded into a wall at the entrance to the Old School Tea Room car park in Falstone, Northumberland, England, was installed to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. The standard crane medallion was replaced with the left facing profile of Queen Victoria.

The medallion in a polished and lacquered version of design #17 hosts a lion passant guardant meaning it is walking while looking towards you (on guard). I have been unable to find a similar heraldic image to explain this customization. The item was sold in 2009 by an auction house following salvage from a Wimbledon home in England.

wimbledon sif

Source: Scottish Ironwork Foundation

Glossary

  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • 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
  • Palmette, a decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal

 


Stowmarket Council School Memorial Drinking Fountain

Location: Stowmarket, Suffolk, England

A cast iron structure located just inside the War Memorial gates on Finborough Road was purchased as a memorial to past students who gave their lives during the First World War. The drinking fountain was installed in the Recreation Ground opened on 1 May 1920 by Mr. George Ormes, chairman of the Stowmarket Urban District Council’s War Memorial Committee.

geograph

In 1961 Queen Elizabeth II’s visit to Suffolk included an exhibition of local industry, arts, crafts and agricultural produce in the Recreation Ground at Stowmarket. To provide ease of access to the Queen’s vehicle the fountain was moved to the western corner of the park. It was not returned to its original location until 2007 following restoration of the structure.

The drinking fountain was recorded as a Grade II historic listed building on 20 February 2017.

The 6’ 2” drinking fountain, design number 18, was manufactured by Walter Macfarlane’s Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, Scotland. Seated on a two tiered square plinth, it has a wide base in the form of a St. Andrew’s cross with canted corners, on which is set a circular shaft ornamented with water lilies. Four lion jambs support four highly decorated quatrefoil basins. Three sides of the central obelisk contain swan and bird relief. The fourth side contains a dedication; This Drinking Fountain / Was Presented / To The Town Of / Stowmarket / By The Children Of The / Adjacent Senior Council / School In Memory Of / Those Old Scholar s/ Who Made The / Supreme Sacrifice / In The Great War / 1914-18. A kylix-shaped vase terminal with four consoles originally offered drinking cups suspended by chains.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Griffins are symbolic of guardians of priceless possessions; lions are symbolic of guardianship; owls are symbolic of guardians of the afterlife, and eagles represent immortality.

Glossary

  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • Kylix, a Grecian style drinking cup
  • Obelisk, a tall, four-sided, narrow tapering monument which ends in a pyramid-like shape at the top
  • 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

 


Barlow’s Memorial Drinking Fountain

Location: Barlow, Oregon, USA

Samuel Kimbrough Barlow, the patriarch of the Barlow family, was a pioneer in 1845 who established Barlow Road, part of the Oregon Trail which improved the journey of wagons crossing the Cascade Mountain Range. He was appointed Justice of the Peace and purchased land which eventually became the town of Barlow.

His son, William, mapped the town and built the family mansion where he planted an avenue of black walnut trees. He was associated with the organization of the state fair, the first woolen mill in Oregon, and the first telegraph line.

The cast iron drinking fountain located on Main Street at the intersection of Washington and Harvard Streets in Brookline Village (officially called Harvard Square) was donated to the City of Barlow in 1904 by Mary Susannah Barlow as a tribute to her parents; William who died in 1904 and Martha who died in 1901.

In 1957 Barlow City Council wanted to remove the old fountain; however at the request of W.B. Tull, a grandson of Martha Ann Barlow, the city was encouraged to restore it.

The fountain is seated on an octagonal stone plinth. Dates engraved on the stone indicate the year of death of Mary’s beloved parents: 1901 Barlow / 1904 Barlow. The octagonal base hosts a trough for dogs at ground level, and above eight sides offer panels for dedication.

The pedestal narrows above a cornice with attic base. A large fluted trough is situated on one side of the pedestal with a smaller basin on the opposite side for use by humans. The pedestal is enriched with bas-relief decoration, and the capital supports a four sided cavetto finial surmounted by an orb.

A nearby marker details the history of the drinking fountain:
Barlow’s Fountain
The historic Barlow fountain was donated to the City of Barlow in 1904 by Mary Susannah Barlow as a tribute to her parents who platted the city in 1891.
William Barlow-son of Susannah Lee and Samuel Kimbrough Barlow pioneer of 1845 and builder of The Barlow Road.
Martha Ann Partlow Barlow – the generous hostess of their family mansion, now known as the historic William Barlow House. This family home remains on the original Barlow DLC site on Hwy 99E, looking south from this marker.
The dates engraved on the base of the Fountain indicate the year of death of Mary’s beloved parents: 1901-Martha Ann Barlow and 1904-William Barlow.
The fountain has 3 tiers of water; the lowest for dogs, the middle for horses and the highest was a drinking fountain for people. This fountain remains for us a significant reminder of Barlow’s historic past.
-Marker placed by City of Barlow – 2002

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
  • Cavetto, a concave moulding with a curve of 90°
  • Cornice, a molding or ornamentation that projects from the top of a building
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fluted, a long rounded groove
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.

Burgie Memorial Drinking Fountain

Location: New Castle, Delaware, USA

In 1897 a cast iron drinking fountain/trough situated in front of the Court House was donated to the city by Annie Newlove Burgie as a memorial to her son, Henry N. Burgie, who died in Chicago on 17 January 1886 at the age of 19.

Burgie fountain PC - 1

Circa 1900. Image provided by Brian Cannon, New Castle Court House Museum

Although a committee was formed on 5 October 1897 to install the fountain, council minutes indicate that the water supply to the structure had not yet been connected in April 1898.

The fountain was mentioned in the New Castle Gazette on 24 May 1900; “The handsome fountain donated to the city by Mrs. Annie Burgie of Chicago, former resident of this city, situated on Delaware street near the post office is yet without water. Council men are urged to attend to the matter at once.”

nc-chap

A bronze plaque is inscribed; Henry N. Burgie / Memorial Fountain / Erected 1900 / A Gift to the City By His Mother / Annie N. Burgie.

fred lauzus

Used with permission, Fred Lauzus

The year of installation inscribed on the plaque is refuted by an article published on October 21, 1897 in the Delaware Gazette and State Journal; “The drinking fountain recently donated by Miss Anna Burgie of Chicago, Ill., a former resident of this city, was placed in position yesterday and the finishing touches given to it, about 10 minutes before the arrival here of the donor. The work was under the supervision of Col. J. Harry Hogers.”

It is believed that installation of a dedication plaque discussed by council in 1909 never matured. The current plaque was installed on the fountain through the efforts of the grand nephews and grand niece of Annie Newlove Burgie on 29 March 1978.

The fountain was modernized in September 1940 when a bubbler was placed in the fountain; and in 1969, as reported by the New Castle Gazette, the fountain was painted by Edward Wise.

The drinking fountain is a pattern from J. W. Fiske Iron Works, and a maker’s plate is attached to the structure which consists of a two tiered octagonal base decorated with bands of foliate frieze and horizontal reeding also offers small troughs at ground level for dogs and smaller animals. The pedestal supports a large gadrooned trough for the use of horses. A spigot originally projected from a bas-relief rosette which supplied water to a smaller fluted basin for human consumption. A cornice of egg and dart moulding is located beneath the capital which supports a capped urn.

Many thanks to Fred Lauzus who furnished current photographs of the fountain and who assisted in the research of this structure. Your assistance is greatly appreciated.

Glossary

  • Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
  • Bubbler, a fountain with a tap which ejects a stream of water
  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Cornice, a molding or ornamentation that projects from the top of a building
  • Egg and dart, a carving of alternating oval shapes and dart or arrow shapes
  • Fluted, a long rounded groove