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Travelling chariot

How and Shanks

Category

Carriages & other vehicles

Date

circa 1815 - 1820

Materials

Glass, Leather, Metal, Textile, Wood

Measurements

2240 x 2030 mm; 3800 mm (Length)19 cwt (Wt)

Place of origin

Great Queen Street

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Collection

National Trust Carriage Museum (Accredited Museum)

On show at

Arlington Court and The National Trust Carriage Museum, Devon, South West, National Trust

NT 272892

Summary

Travelling Chariot circa 1815 - 1820, possibly built by How and Shanks of London.

Full description

With short dormeuse boot and swordcase on whip springs and compassed wood and iron perch. In chocolate brown and yellow livery with red lining with unidentified crest on panels. Regency stripe interior trim with two cushions. This is one of the earliest carriages in the collection. It was built around 1815-1820, possibly by How & Shanks of London. The age can be judged by certain features such as the grease axles, whip springs and the doors hung on exterior butt hinges. This type of carriage was used for long journeys, including the Grand Tour of Europe, which every young nobleman and gentleman of substance made in the 18th and early 19th centuries. The carriage was postillion-driven, and the horses and postboys would be hired for it from post to post. Post was the name given to the inns, which hired horses and postboys all over Britain and Western Europe. There is a sword case at the back of the body, accessible only from inside. The extension on the front of the body is known as a dormeuse boot. It has folding panels which can be let down to enable the inside passengers to stretch their legs at full length into the boot and sleep while they travelled. Behind the body is a hind boot or rumble, with a seat for two servants, usually a valet and a lady’s maid. The extended front body loops above the platform boot show that a coachman’s seat could be fitted to make the carriage suitable for town driving. In this case the rumble would be removed, so that footmen could stand on the hind footboard. This carriage was donated by the Marquis of Bute in 1964. For many years it was believed to have belonged to the Marquess of Anglesey owing to the monogram on the door but despite extensive research there has been no evidence to corroborate this attribution. CJN 14.11.07 BODY Conventional early 19th century chariot body with short dormeuse boot and sword case. Platform boot in front suspended from extended body loops and central stay to underside of front floor. Fittings to carry removable coachman’s seat. Black painted iron body loops. Hind boot with rumble seat and stowage compartment beneath flooor with access through lift-out board. Storage compartment beneath feet with access through bottom hinged door. Treble seat rails. Doors Doors on three butt hinges with brass oval drop hinged handles. Doors can be locked from outside by budget locks on upper panels. Steps Double folding steps at doors, jags worked on front outer stock hoops. Oval jagged treat plates on outer roller bolts. Rectangular jagged plate steps on irons extending from front spring stays. Two rectangular jagged plate steps for access to hind boot on iron bolted to near side end of hind spring bed. Windows Two front lowering windows and lowering window in near side door. Frames covered with black velvet faded to brown on outside. Venetian blind in near side door (blinds unseen at front windows) – window and blind missing from outside door. Lamps Rectangular back light square lamps with square single tier chimneys. Lamp bodies can be lifted from cases and turned through 180 degrees to prevent damage when not in use. Lamps are fitted in sockets on irons bolted to front pillars. CARRIAGE Wheels 12 and 14 spoke English pattern wheels with flat iron tyres. Axles Common grease axles with large square nuts secured with linch pins front and back. Front axle compassed up boled and clipped to axle bed. Hind axle compased down bolted and clipped. Springs Whip springs with transverse and fore and aft stays. Fore carriage Close futchell fore carriage with straight transom and axle bed. Compassed horn bar. Full wheel plate and turned splinter bar. Circular scrolled fiddle ends on beds, framing pieces and futchells. POLE Perch Plated wood perch, compassed to match line of underside of body. Hind carriage with wings connected by shrunk hoops bolted beneath hind axle bed and morticed through hind spring bed and morticed through hind spring bed. Brake No brake. Hook on perch for drag shoe. Drag shoe on leather served chair. No hook to hang it when not in use Paint Upper panels, boots, underside of floor black. Lower panels, front and mid panels, door frame dark brown. Front pillars, wheels and carriage pale yellow. Wheels, springs and carriage lined broad red edged with two dark brown lines. Heraldry Monogram surmounted by _’s coronet (4 pearls) on door panels Leather Leather covered roof, upper panels and sword case. Buckled leather main braces, collar braces with leather served buckles. Check brace rings on body pillars but check braces missing. Leather serving to drag shoe chains. Roller bolt leathers. POLE External Trimming Leather cloth covered back and side squabs, seat cushion and seat fall to rumble seat. Cushion has brown spiral pattern seaming lace and seat fall has brown lace edging. Broad lace footman’s holders missing. Two webbing footman’s holders. COACHMAN’S SEAT Internal Trimming Pink watered silk (now faded to brown) with dark pink and satin stripe. ¼ squabs, back squab, seat back and two seat cushions. Buttoned throughout with pink wool tufts. Roof lining, front and door linings brown faced wool cloth. Broad lace worsted floral scroll on worsted red ground to frize, swing holders, double loop hand holders, glass strings, door and front pockets, seat cushion edges, seat fall edges and step pad edges. Minor laces to match spring curtain above n/s front window spring curtain roller above o/s door. Pink and maroon loop pile carpet on step treads and rocker. Door carpet missing.

Makers and roles

How and Shanks, coachbuilder

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