Monday, January 4, 2016

Awning and Ventilation Designs from 1881

In the days before air conditioning, all of the 19th Century, folks had to come up with other ways to help cool down their stores and homes. Below is an illustration and article about new and improved awning ventilation and designs. Enjoy!


THE novel window awning shown in the accompanying illustration is capable of being readily put into various positions to shade the window and to effect a proper circulation of air in the apartments.
lower bent bars, a b, pivoted together at their ends, and secured to the window-frame by means of thumb-screws, c. The awning cover, B, is attached at its upper and lower ends to the bars a and b, and at its lateral edges to the window-frame by buttons or rings. This construction practically divides the awning into two sections, d e, either of which can be opened or closed, as may be required. The only difference between the old frame and the new one is that the latter has two bars instead of one, and is attached to the middle of the window-frame instead of to the lower quarter. The new awning has also an extra cord and pulley, and requires a little more canvas than the old style; but this is compensated for by the readiness with which it may be applied to a window, no fitting, cutting, or nailing being required, and the inventor states that when the durability of this awning is considered, it is much cheaper than the common form.
The various ways in which this awning may be arranged are shown in the annexed engraving, which is taken from a photograph, and accurately represents the invention as applied to the building at the corner of Gay and Baltimore-streets, Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.
Fig. 2 shows the old style of awning, with improvements attached. Fig. 3 shows an adjustment made by loosening a central cord, opening the top, and closing the bottom, placing the awning in an inverted position. Fig. 4 shows the awning having one of its sides dropped on its inner surface. With this arrangement, when the wind blows along the side of the building, it is gathered and directed
thus arranged, not only in thoroughly ventilating and cooling the apartment, but also in excluding the noxious vapours that rise from the street and gutter at night.
The inventor says that by the aid of these room " ventilators every bed-chamber can be made a sanitarium during summer epidemics. The germs of disease, animal and vegetable parasites, fungi, albuminoid, ammonia, &c, which are swept from the streets and gutters by servants into the air, and carried into our sleeping-rooms for hours before our waking, will find an effectual check by the use of these inverted " awnings."
These room ventilators are so constructed that their entire surface can be brought under the immediate inspection of the eye, and within reach of the brush and cleaner. By drawing up the lower part of it, and letting the upper bar fall through the lower one, the canvas is turned inside out, bringing its upper outer surface close to the window, where it may be freed from dust, spots, or stains, and cleaned with suitable washes for preserving its colours and making it last three times as long as the old style awnings, which are nailed securely to the top and sides of window frames, putting all the outer service of canvas beyond the reach of any protection. As these ventilators are reversible, they can be readily turned inside out, and they may be used in that condition after the outer surface has faded or worn seedy.
These improvements have been patented by Dr. James E. Dwinelle, south-east corner Broadway and Baltimore, Maryland (U.S.), who may be addressed for further information.
Source: The Furniture Gazette ©1881

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