Work Trumpet

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Description (Brief)
As more American volunteer fire fighting companies began to form during the late 18th century, a need emerged for better organized efforts in combating conflagrations. Engineers and officers would use “speaking trumpets” to amplify their voices over the noise and commotion of a fire scene to direct the company in effectively fighting the blaze. Two trumpet variants are reflected in the collection: plain and functional “working” trumpets that were actively used at fires, and highly decorated “presentation” trumpets. Presentation trumpets were awarded to firefighters in honor of their service, or between fire companies during visits, competitions, and musters.
This brass and nickel work trumpet was used during the 19th century. The body of the trumpet is brass with two flat nickel bands wrapped around the upper and lower sections of the shaft. Two decorative eagle heads have rings in their beaks allowing for a cord to be attached to the trumpet.
Location
Currently not on view
date made
unknown
maker
unknown
place made
United States
Physical Description
brass (overall material)
nickel (part: bands material)
Measurements
overall: 18 1/2 in x 7 in; 46.99 cm x 17.78 cm
ID Number
2005.0233.0877
accession number
2005.0233
catalog number
2005.0233.0877
Credit Line
Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Fire Fighting and Law Enforcement
Work
Cultures & Communities
Firefighting Collection
Speaking Trumpets
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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