This product was added to our catalog on Tuesday 10 August, 2010.
illiam H. Richards was in his 40's when he was granted the patent for his anti-sunstroke cushion. This was not his first patent, he had an earlier one for a fork knife spoon combination. He also came from the same small
Massachusetts town as female clothing contractor Harriet Moore.
Richards was a long established businessman, working first as a buyer for a large house in New York, then for the John M. Stanton dry goods company of Boston. He traveled regularly to europe for business, and it is quite likely that his worldliness created a pool of knowledge from which he designed his patents. When Mr. Stanton closed his business, Richards accompanied him to Georgia where they invested in southern railroads as the postwar southern economy was being rebuilt. In 1890, he was paralyzed from a stroke, which wrecked his health, and ultimately bringing his death two years later. His body was laid to rest in Enfield, the place of his birth, 72 years earlier.
The impetus for this item was the unfortunate situation that there is a bad reproduction currently being offered to the public.Being an afficianado of patented items, I was glad to see it offered, but as I began to look more into the product, I found that what was being offered was not in any way a reproduction of the original item. The first red flag, was that the typefaces and graphical layout was incorrect. As we looked closer, we found that the reproduction had the wrong patent date. After looking up the patent, we found that the construction was completely wrong. The most upsetting part is that the person offering the reproduction lives less than a mile from the original artifact.
Our reproduction is constructed of the correct materials noted in the patent. There is one layer of cork, and the bottom layer is of natural sea sponge. It is also quilted not only as per the patent illustration, but also the original. Interestingly enough, most of the quilting points of the original had fallen out, and if one had not seen the patent abstract, you would not recognize them as having been there.
With so many events taking place during the summer months, this form of period air conditioning it is the answer to our prayers.