19th Century Children's Sleighs
by Anita Mae Draper
Welcome to Part 2 of my Sleigh series. Today the emphasis is on children's sleighs of the 19th and early 20th centuries. This series isn't to teach the history of sleighs, but to show you examples of what were in use at the time.
I'll start with this studio image I found on Flickr. It shows that not everyone was happy with this winter sport. But then, I wonder what expression she would have shown if the photo was taken outdoors:
|Tintype of Displeased Princess in a Sleigh (but No Snow), 1870s by lisby1, on Flickr|
This next push sleigh was manufactured around 1890 by the Paris Mfg. Co out of Paris, Maine. It is listed at icollector.com as "Wood w/orig paint & pin-striping, orig cushion w/oilcloth cover & steel runners, c.1890's, Exc cond, 33"H x 50"L x 15"W". It has the same handle as the tintype (above):
|Push sleigh manufactured in1890 by the Paris Mfg. Co out of Paris, Maine.|
Rubylane.com carries this next child's sleigh. Although it looks similar to the one above, there's one big difference... it's a doll's sleigh. The listing says, "I see no evidence of a seat ever having been present. In my opinion, this was always a toy, meant to be used by children to give their dolls, or perhaps the family kitty a ride." Adorable, no? Or is just that I'm a sucker for anything blue.
|A doll's push sleigh|
Sleighs were also made in the Bentwood manner of rocking chairs. Here's a 57" child's push sleigh with wooden frame and Bentwood runners. Notice the front rail for the child to play with. The information for this sleigh is at the http://www.prices4antiques.com/ auction research site which lists it as c1801-1900:
|Bentwood push sleigh|
This sleigh looks similar to the Bentwood sleigh above. Wendy Hamilton Antiques lists this child's push sleigh as: "This 19th century push sleigh would have been used for a child. The paint and stenciling are original. There is no damage and there are no repairs or replaced parts. It has what could be its original upholstery in great condition. The entire sleigh is just over 3 1/2 feet long. It is 1'6" at the widest and stands 2'10" from the ground at the handle end and 1'10" at the front end. The seating area is 2' 7 1/2" long."
|19th Century Push Sleigh|
Pull sleighs are those pulled by people or small animals like ponies, dogs and goats. The icollector.com site shows this Victorian child's pull sleigh, again in a pretty blue although I'm not sure if the part on the floor is the shaft for pulling or the handle for pushing.
|Victorian child's pull sleigh (push sleigh?)|
|Painted sleigh with unusual cutaway runners|
It reminds me of the carrioles from Quebec that I introduced in my sleigh post featuring adult size sleighs. This time from the McCord online museum, we find Young Master Corriveau in a sleigh pulled by a goat.
Photo courtesy of McCord Museum.
|Master Corriveau in goat sleigh, Montreal, QC, 1880|
|Late 19th Century Child's Pull Sleigh|
The video is of an older child's sleigh pulled by a miniature horse.
I'm working on 2 more posts in this series: one on sleds (Dec 20th) and one on unique and royal sleighs (in January).
Last time I asked if you’d ever been on a sleigh ride and I loved that you shared your experiences.
This time my question is more basic: Have you ever touched snow? Do you live where it snows regularly or once in a lifetime?