1 of 3--Original 14' Antiq. Cast Iron Street Lamps w/Copper Tops

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One of three available, we utilized these magnificent antioque street lamps in front of our old location. With an overall height of 14 feet, these shed an abundance of light. The light posts are painted cast iron and support the copper and glass heads majestically. If you need one, two or three do not hesitate to contact us immediately, as these are sure to find a new home soon.

The use of street lighting was first recorded in the city of Antioch from the 4th century, later in the Arab Empire from the 9th–10th centuries, especially in Cordova, and then in London from 1417 when Henry Barton, the mayor, ordered "lanterns with lights to be hanged out on the winter evenings between Hallowtide and Candlemasse." However it was introduced to the United States by famed inventor Benjamin Franklin, who was the postmaster of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Because of this, many regard Philadelphia as the birthplace of street lighting in the United States.

The colonial-era streetlights were lit by candles placed inside a glass vessel, which kept the candle from being blown out. Franklin's design was four-sided, with four separate panes of glass, so that if one pane of glass was broken, the lamp did not need to be entirely replaced, and might not blow out.

After the invention of gas light by William Murdoch in 1792, cities in Britain began to light their streets using gas. The United States followed suit shortly afterwards with the introduction of gas lighting to the streets of Baltimore in 1816. Throughout the nineteenth century, the use of gas lighting increased. Some locations in the United States still use gas lights.

After Edison pioneered electric use, light bulbs were developed for the streetlights as well. The first city to use electric street lights was Wabash, Indiana. Charles F. Brush of Cleveland, Ohio wanted to publicly test his new invention the "Brush Light" and needed a city to do so. The City Council of Wabash agreed to testing the lights and on March 31, 1880, Wabash became the "First Electrically Lighted City in the World" as a flood of light engulfed the town from four Brush Lights mounted on top of the courthouse. People can still see one of the original Brush Lights on display at the Wabash County Courthouse.[4] By the beginning of the 20th century, the number of fire-based streetlights was dwindling as developers were searching for safer and more effective ways to illuminate their streets. Fluorescent and incandescent lights became very popular during the 1930s and 1940s, when automobile travel began to flourish. A street with lights was referred to as a white way during the early 20th century; part of New York City's Broadway was nicknamed the Great White Way due to the massive number of electric lights used on theater marquees lining the street.


** The diameter was taken at the top. The bottom has a 20" diameter.
Place of Origin
United States
Date of Manufacture
early 20th century
Early 20th Century
Materials and Techniques
Has been painted several times as seen in the photos. Some layers of paint have chipped off. We have the glass that goes in the top, although it was not photographed with them in.
166.5 in. H
423 cm H
Dealer Location
Chicago, IL
Number of Items
Reference Number
Contact The Seller
Response Time: Usually within 1 hour
1stdibs seller since 2006
Located in Chicago, IL

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