An American Gas Chandelier

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Circa 1855
Attributed to Cornelius, Baker and Company

Rod-suspended gas chandeliers were popular in America during the 1850’s. By utilizing one of the suspension rods to conceal the gas pipe, the center of the chandelier could be used to display a figure. On this beautiful five-light example, a bust of our first president George Washington, depicted in a pose derived from antiquity, rests on a narrow round pedestal. This chandelier retains its original dark bronzed patinated finish with gilt-lacquered highlights. An additional gas outlet on the side of the pan would have provided gas for a portable gas lamp. An almost identical pair of gasoliers with putti appoint the office of the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution.

Brass, spelter, and glass
Height: 43” Width: 27”

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