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This is a 1920's era steam locomotive headlight manufactured by the Dressel Railway Lamp & Signal Co., Arlington, N.J. USA, as stated on the brass plate located on the top of the raised lamp vent. It retains the original thick glass reflective concave lens on the front that measures 14 inches in diameter and survives in excellent original condition. The light features two glass side-doors that were lit by a separate interior bulb inside the headlight housing. The number 317 is embossed on the outer frame of each side doors. Stands on two foot brackets with mounting holes.The construction is a very heavy cast metal fixture painted black and weighs 62 pounds. Rough dimensions are about 18"x18"x20".
The only visible damage is the frosted outer glass on the hinged side doors (probably were the backplates for the cut-out engine numbers) is damaged, but easily replaceable. Price includes replacement of the broken glass (if desired) and addition of new interior and lens light for residential use.
The history of this light is unknown and came to us as part of a large maritime collection that we acquired some time ago. And even though this is not a maritime light, it is certainly a rare surviving example of an early 20th century railroad locomotive headlight. Also, our research did not find a comparative example, or any example of another Dressel Railway headlamp!
Dealers of nautical antiques and collectibles, marine art, lamps, lighting, ship salvage and hardware, Skipjack sells quality nautical furniture and furnishings, marine instruments, model boats, nautical gifts and decor. Skipjack’s Marine Art Gallery features marine paintings, sculptures, ship models and folk art featuring mermaids, whales, fish and fowl.
Please visit our online store again soon or if in the Hampton Roads (Tidewater) coastal region of Virginia, visit our marine gallery in historic Olde Towne Portsmouth. We're just a short distance from Virginia Beach, Colonial Williamsburg and the Outer Banks of North Carolina, and just across the river from downtown Norfolk. By boat, we're located at mile marker "0" of the Atlantic Intra-coastal Waterway!