"Volito" In-line Roller Skate

Before the invention of indoor rinks, ice skaters turned to the Volito when they needed to practice and didn't have access to ice. This in-line skate consisted of a wooden sole, a single row of five wooden wheels, and a curved iron bar at the front that served as a rudimentary brake. What made the Volito superior to other models, however, was the unequal size of its wheels —larger at the center and smaller at the ends. This simple modification allowed the skater to execute turns more easily.
Currently not on view
Object Name
roller skate
Date made
Tyers, Robert John
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
metal (overall material)
overall: 12 in x 3 in x 3 in; 30.48 cm x 7.62 cm x 7.62 cm
Place Made
United States
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Roller Skating
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Sport and Leisure
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
from Miss Elizabeth W. Plimpton

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