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The Green Tree: Highlights from the Collection of the Mutual Assurance Company of Philadelphia - April 2007
 
 
painting
 
Woodward, Lovett & Company

Washington Hose Company Presentation Speaking Horn, 1865
Silver-plated brass, 22 inches long
Inscribed on front: “Presented to the Washington Hose Company
by their Special Friends Oct. 16, 1865.”
References: Garvan and Wojtowicz 1977, 118, illus.
RS 6329


Elaborate speaking horns such as this example were used for ceremonial purposes and carried in parades; fireman lore has it that they occasionally served as drinking vessels.

The Washington Hose Company was founded in 1811 in Philadelphia, when the University of Pennsylvania granted the group property on the west side of Ninth Street below Market Street on which to erect a firehouse. Individuals and businesses presented various gifts to Philadelphia’s volunteer fire companies for use in the Great Parade that was held on October 16, 1865. Newspaper accounts document that the jewelry firm Woodward, Lovett & Company presented “a magnificent silver fire horn” to the Washington Hose Company; it was received by ex-councilman John Craig, who made a “pithy speech” on the occasion.1

Note

1. Philadelphia Inquirer, October 16, 1865; Sunday Dispatch, October 16, 1865.


  


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