1870’s Dennis & Wheeler Mfg. Co. No.0

Dennis & Wheeler was a tinware manufacturer in Chicago, Illinois. One of the really early lantern makers that made lanterns under the John Henry Irwin patents. Steam Gauge & Lantern Co. would go on to buy out the Dennis & Wheeler company.

This lantern actually comes courtesy of Melanie Loveland. Check out her awesome collection here! She so kindly drove to The Dalles, Oregon to pick up this lantern, then shipped it to me. The stories this lantern could tell… The Dalles was the last stop on the Oregon Trail before Portland. Before a proper road was built, many pioneers had to build rafts and float down the dangerous Columbia River to reach Portland. With this lantern being a ‘barn find’ before I got it in an online auction, it’s quite possible that this lantern was along for the journey one immigrant made along the trail.

The lantern is in excellent condition, with only minor pitting near the top. The globe plate still has a little original tinning left on it, and the burner/cone are still covered in the brass plating put on when manufactured. Even more increble the burner is marked with the 1870 JHI patent and the globe is ever so faintly marked “Pat May 4, 1869”, which would be the original globe to this lantern from the factory. It is absolutely incredible this lantern has been kept in such good condition for close to 150 years!

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