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Catalog Data

Cast iron, paint
22 1/2 × 31 × 26 1/2 in. (57.2 × 78.7 × 67.3 cm)
Victorian (1837-1901)
Pedestal, Egg & Dart Motif, White, Cast Iron Makers mark on two sides of base
Makers mark on two sides of base
Label Text:
In America, urns have been a popular feature in the garden since the mid-nineteenth century and were frequently displayed similarly to sculptures, usually being positioned in a place of importance. They were commonly elevated on a base, which might also be accompanied by a socle, plinth, or pedestal. Many bases also displayed the surname of the family who owned the land. Bases came in range of materials including marble, lead, stone, composition stone, bronze, terra cotta, or cast iron. They might be simple or ornate, and the design usually coordinated with the overall aesthetic of the urn it displayed. Designs followed the trends of the time with natural forms, ornamental motifs pulled from historic revival styles, and complicated shapes.
Cast-iron urns were typically made in sections or might be all cast in one piece, and additional attachments such as handles, plinths, pedestals and bases were available. Since cast iron pieces were made in components and bolted together; numerous combinations were possible. Customers had the ability to select from a broad range of different finishes, components, and design motifs. Pieces were also interchangeable which allowed for replacement parts or design variations by the addition of different handles, plinths, pedestals, or bases. The vast variety of decorative motifs and forms for elaborate handles, fully decorated bowls, fanciful balusters, and coordinating pedestals allowed for extraordinary combinations for urns in nineteenth century.
Robert Wood & Co. Makers Phila
bases (object components)  Search this
cast iron  Search this
Garden ornaments and furniture  Search this
Credit Line:
Smithsonian Gardens, Horticultural Artifacts Collection.
Accession number:
Restrictions & Rights:
Usage conditions apply
See more items in:
Horticultural Artifacts Collection
Data Source:
Smithsonian Gardens