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The Green Tree: Highlights from the Collection of the Mutual Assurance Company of Philadelphia - April 2007
 
 
painting
 
Robert Eichholtz and Henry Eichholtz
(1833–1912)/(1830–1918)
Model of the “Hope” Fire Engine, 1854
Wood and iron, brass trim, 23 × 37 1/2 × 12 inches
References: Garvan and Wojtowicz 1977, 124–125, color illus.
RS 6283


This fire engine model was made in 1854 by Robert (1833–1912) and Henry Eichholtz (1830–1918) of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, sons of the noted portraitist Jacob Eichholtz (1776–1842). The elder Eichholtz painted decorations for a volunteer fire company in Lancaster of which he had been a member. This model represents a Philadelphia-style, double-decker end-stroke hand-pumper with an octagonal condenser case. Garvan and Wojtowicz tentatively identified it as one that the Hope Engine Company of Philadelphia sold to an unknown buyer in 1854. That engine was known to have had a square condenser case, but it may have been altered to the octagonal form during extensive repairs. They also conjectured that the “Hope” was originally conceived as an artist’s ideal of a fire engine. Although the model’s small size suggests that it was a child’s toy, they concluded that “the engraving on the plaques is too exotic for a toy and more in keeping with a men’s club.” Garvan and Wojtowicz also noted that the engraved ornamentation on the model was similar to that found on guns, and that the Eichholtz brothers were experienced gunsmiths.



  


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