Category Archives: Saracen Foundry

Paterson Memorial Clock

Location: Bridge of Allan, Stirlingshire, Scotland

The Memorial Clock and Drinking Fountain located on Henderson Street was erected in 1898 by public subscription to commemorate gratitude for Dr. Alexander Paterson’s service to the town.

Dr. Paterson was a doctor and Medical Officer of Health for the burgh in addition to being a Justice of the Peace. His realised dream of creating a health resort originated from his belief in the therapeutic waters in the area.

In June 1929, the two ton drinking fountain and clock was relocated a few yards west to allow for road widening. The structure was fitted with electricity in 1930.

Restoration of the structure was undertaken in 2009 with a fresh coat of green paint and gold leaf. The clock was refurbished by James Ritchie and Sons, Clockmakers.

Manufactured at the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow drinking fountain number 231 from Walter Macfarlane’s catalogue stands 20 feet high. Originally seated on a double tiered square plinth, the square pedestal with Egyptian patterned frieze, designed by Alexander ‘Greek” Thomson, offers a demi-lune basin. A spigot within the geometric pattern released water into the basin, and a drinking cup attached to a chain was suspended from a decorative console.

The griffin feet capitals support a four sided central stanchion heavily decorated with palmette and acanthus relief on three sides. The fourth side contains an engraved dedication; The Paterson Memorial / Erected By The Inhabitants Of Bridge Of Allan / And Others In Memory Of The Late / Dr. Alexander Paterson / Who Practised In This District For Upwards Of 50 Years / And Who Was Medical Officer Of Health For The Burgh / He Was Held In Universal Esteem / Being A Skilful Physician And A Kind Friend / 1898.

A fluted column with attic base arises from a highly decorated acroter. The structure is capped with a clock face on four sides.

Glossary

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Acroter, flat base
  • Attic base, a column base with two rings
  • Capital: The top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Fluted, a long rounded groove decorating the shaft of a column
  • 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
  • Palmette, a decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.
  • Spigot, a device that controls the flow of water (tap)
  • Stanchion, an upright bar or post providing support

St. Leonard’s Square Fountain

Location: Wallingford, Oxfordshire, England

A cast iron drinking fountain replaced an ornamental pump which had been installed for use in the market place in 1835. The fountain presented to the town by Alderman Hawkins was of similar design to the fountain donated by Alderman Champion and erected in St Leonard’s Square in 1885. It no longer exists.

1908

Circa 1908 St. Leonard’s Square

The fountain in St. Leonard’s Square was design #31 from the catalogue of Walter Macfarlane’s Saracen Foundry in Glasgow. Seated on a circular stone plinth, the wide base was in the form of a St. Andrew’s cross with four lion jambs supporting four elaborately decorated quatrefoil basins for horses. The stanchion was decorated with bands of acanthus and alternating panels of cranes and swans.

Four consoles protruded from a circular fluted shaft to suspend drinking cups on chains. The standard design was offered with a round lamp.

Glossary:

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Fluted Shaft, a long rounded groove decorating the shaft of a column
  • 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, upright bar or post providing support

 


Castleford Diamond Jubilee Fountain

Location: Castleford, Yorkshire, England

Queen’s Park was created in 1897 to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. The fountain was installed in 1898. The bandstand which was built in 1900 remains; however, vandalism precipitated the removal of the drinking fountain in the 1950s.

Drinking fountain number 8 from Walter Macfarlane & Co.’s catalogue was manufactured at the Saracen Foundry at Possilpark in Glasgow. The structure was 9 feet 6 inches high and consisted of four columns, from the capitals of which consoles with griffin terminals united with arches formed of decorated mouldings.

Rope moulded cartouches within each lunette hosted the image of a crane, and an open bible displaying a verse from St. John’s Gospel chapter 4 verse 14, ‘Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst,’ or optional memorial shields. On two of the sides provision was made for receiving an inscription using raised metal letters; whilst on the other two sides was the useful monition, Keep The Pavement Dry. Civic virtues such as temperance were often extolled in inscriptions on drinking fountains. The structure was surmounted by an open filigree dome, the finial being a crown with a pattée cross.

Under the canopy stood the font (design number 7) 5 foot 8 inches high. The terminal was a crane. The basin (2 feet 6 inches in diameter) 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 fountain was operated by pressing a button.

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.

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

 


Parker Memorial Fountain

Location: Daylesford, Victoria, Australia

The drinking fountain/horse trough currently located at Vincent Street and Central Springs Road near the old post office is a replica of a 19th century structure originally erected at Burke Square at the intersection of Vincent and Albert Streets.

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Source: Facebook/DaylesfordHepburnoldphotos

The fountain was donated to the town by Mr. George W. Parker, Mayor of the Borough, in commemoration of his year of office. It was obtained through Messrs. John Dank & Son, Melbourne, and delivered by ship from England. The 15 feet high structure was formally presented on 17 June 1891.

In 1914 complaints were made by carters due to a lack of water flow which was not enough to allow horses to drink. It was discovered that this issue was caused when several teams of horses drank in succession. A ball tap was installed to correct the problem.

The following year in March, the maintenance crew reported that the taps in the fountain at Burke Square were constantly being broken by children. An additional health issue of the cups hanging in the horse troughs resulted in the cups being removed. It is unknown when the drinking fountain itself was removed.

As part of the Daylesford Streetscape Revitalisation Project in 2012, a replica of the historical horse trough was installed at its original location in Burke Square.

The original drinking fountain was design #27 manufactured by Walter Macfarlane & Co. in the Saracen Foundry, Glasgow. The design was advertised as well suited for Street Crossings, Squares, Market Places, etc., as it afforded drinking accommodation for a large number of horses and drivers, and effectively lit a wide space, with the least possible obstruction to other traffic.

It provided a drinking trough for horses with small basins for dogs at ground level. The trough was a 6’6” diameter circular cast iron basin supported on legs in the form of horses’ hooves. The water was regulated by a small patent cistern, which was self-acting, and when the troughs were full the ball rose and shut the water off.

The central stanchion supported a central column with flared bases and pilasters. Four projecting consoles suspended cups on chains that allowed humans to drink from spouting water (the water flow was operated with two bib valves which released water when pressed). Horses drank from the large basin.

A dedication shield located directly above the consoles was adhered to the fluted shaft. The decorative capital, enriched with acanthus and rosette with a dog tooth frieze, supported a central gas lamp roofed in with scales of opal glass which allowed the lantern to cast the light downward. The terminal was a crown.

walking melbourne 

Glossary

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Dog tooth, pyramid shaped carving
  • Fluted Shaft, a long rounded groove decorating the shaft of a column
  • Frieze, the horizontal part of a classical moulding just below the cornice, often decorated with carvings
  • 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.
  • Rosette, a round stylized flower design
  • Stanchion, an upright bar or post providing support
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal

 


Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Fountain

Location: Fort Augustus, Inverness-shire, Scotland

The Victorian cast iron drinking fountain located at Victoria Gardens was originally located beside the Caledonian Canal at Fountain Cottage and relocated when Fountain Cottage was sold by the Caledonian Canal Company. It was erected to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee of 60 Years.

Drinking fountain number 8 from Walter Macfarlane & Co.’s catalogue was manufactured at the Saracen Foundry at Possilpark in Glasgow. 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.

Rope moulded cartouches within each lunette host the left facing bust of Queen Victoria with an inscription using raised metal letters, Victoria Jubilee 1837-1897. The structure is surmounted by an open filigree dome, the standard finial was a crown with a pattée cross. However, the absence of the crown may indicate that the canopy supported a lamp (I have been unable to find an image of the structure in its original location.)

Under the canopy stands the font (design number 7), 5 feet 8 inches high. The terminal was a crane which is now missing. The basin (2 feet 6 inches in diameter) which has a scalloped edge and decorative relief is 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 fountain was operated by pressing a button.

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.

 

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

 


Clean Drinking Water in Sydney

Every street in Sydney should have its drinking-fountain. It should be at least as easy to obtain a drink of pure water as a glass of milk or beer. Sydney is a sub-tropical city, and sometimes it is warm and sometimes it is dusty … Sydney should be a city of fountains.
(J. H. Maiden, Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens to the 1909 Royal Commission on Improving Sydney)

In the first decades of the life of Sydney houses were built without water and without taps. Even as late as the mid twentieth century some old housing stock had only an outdoor tap in the back yard. And before the streets were full of cars and buses that drank petrol, they were the domain of horses that needed to drink water.

Drinking Fountains for the City.
At the suggestion, or order of the mayor, eight highly ornamented cast-iron drinking fountains have been imported by Mr. A. Chisholm, from Glasgow, where they were manufactured by Messrs. Walter Macfarlane, and Co., of the Saracen Foundry. The fountains stand about eight feet high.

The structure, which is pagoda-shaped, consists of four columns, from the capitals of which consoles with griffin terminals unite with arches formed of decorated mouldings, encircling ornamental shields bearing the City Arms, a shield charged with a ship and beehive and working bees, surmounted by a mural crown impaled with a pick-axe surmounted by a star. The sinister supporter is an aboriginal native with a spear; the dexter supporter an English sailor. Motto, “I take, but I surrender.”

sydney clean water
On two of the sides provision is made for receiving an inscription; whilst on the other two sides is the useful monition, “Keep the pavement dry.” Surmounting this is an open and highly enriched dome, the apex being occupied by a crown. Under the canopy stands the font with basin about two feet in diameter.

It has been suggested that if practicable one of these fountains, an engraving of which is appended, shall be placed in each ward of the municipality, in that part which constitutes the greatest thoroughfare. It is likely that they will be erected at or near the following places. Alfred Park, Flagstaff Hill near the Observatory, junction of William and Madleay streets, the entrance to Moore Park, the Haymarket, near the intersection of Park and Elizabeth streets, near the corner of Market and Sussex streets, and on the Circular Quay near the Custom House. The erection of these handsome fountains will be of general utility, and they will have a very pleasing effect. Their entire cost is £269 3s. 8d. (Australian Town and Country Journal Saturday 9 July 1870)


Church Street Fountain

Location: Preston, Lancashire, England

A cast iron drinking fountain/horse trough was erected in 1897 at the intersection of Church and Stanley Streets outside H. M. Prison. It was donated in 1897 by Mary Cross, the founder of the Deaf and Dumb School at Brockholes. Sadly, it no longer exists.

Design number 19 was advertised by Walter Macfarlane & Co. to be used as a standalone fountain or placed under a canopy structure. Manufactured by the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, the font was 10’ 10” high. The wide base with canted corners supported a circular shaft ornamented with water lilies. Four lion jambs supported four highly decorated quatrefoil basins. The stanchion and central column were decorated with floral relief and projecting acanthus. Four consoles protruded from the column to suspend drinking cups on chains. Two elaborate brackets supported lamps. The capital supported the finial, a statue of Samson.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Lions are symbolic of guardianship and Samson is symbolic of strength.

1900

Circa 1900

barrackschurch st

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
  • 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