Saturday, November 12, 2016

First Use of an Umbrella

With the excerpt below from Houghtalings it sent me searching for some 19th century information on umbrellas. In 1852 Samuel Fox invented the steel-ribbed umbrella. A huge improvement over the wood and baleen umbrella frames.

From Houghtalings Handbook ©1887

The First Use of an Umbrella

For many centuries the umbrella had been in common use in China and Japan before it was introduced into European countries. About 200 years ago, it was introduced into London by Jonas Hanway, a benevolent and eccentric old gentleman. When he first raised his umbrella, on a rainy day, he found it of unexpected use in keeping off a shower of sticks and stones, with which the street boys pelted him. For a long while it was considered effeminate and ridiculous to use an umbrella.

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