The square-back sconce (left) dates back to the 1700s and
is patterned after one that hangs in the Card Room of the Red
Lion Inn near Philadelphia where it is rumored that Benjamin
Franklin played an occasional game of cards. The reflector back
measures nine by eleven inches quite possibly so sized
since the entire sconce could have been made from one a single
sheet of tinplate.
The fleur-de-lis sconce (center) is patterned after a pair
on display in the study at Washingtons Headquarters in
Rock Hill, Rockingham, New Jersey.
The rectangular-back sconce (right) is an adaptation of
the sconce on the left. Its slim lines give it an air of elegance.
A hand-forged nail is supplied with each sconce for hanging.
It is interesting to note that on all of these sconces
the hole from which the sconce is hung is punched from the rear,
thus forming a lip to the front that helps prevent the sconce
from slipping off the nail that suspends it. Also, it was common
to provide a slit in the candle socket. The slit would have made
it easier to remove the candle stub that would have then been
burned, until consumed, in a small candleholder referred to as
a save-all. A typical home in the 1800s would have
had no more than a total of three or four candleholders.
||Square-back Sconce 9W x 5D x 13H
||Fleur-de-lis Sconce 5W x 3D x
||Rectangular-back Sconce 6W x 5D