Details about EXTREMELY RARE L.N. FOWLER’S OWN PHRENOLOGY WALKING CANE 1890See original listing
05 Aug, 2012 22:31:34 BST
[ 1 bid ]
Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom
EXTREMELY RARE L.N. FOWLER’S OWN PHRENOLOGY WALKING CANE 1890
This is an extremely rare opportunity to acquire L. N. FOWLER’S own phrenology walking cane dated 1890.
L. N. Fowler was born in America and became the foremost influencing Victorian figure in the development of phrenology. This cane was present to him in 1890, the year he stepped down as President of the British Phrenology Society. The inscription reading, "PRESENTED TO L N FOWLER TO HELP YOU NAVIGATE THE BUMPS AND HOLLOWS 1890".
The American brothers Lorenzo Niles Fowler (1811–1896) and Orson Squire Fowler (1809–1887) were leading phrenologists of their time. Orson, together with associates Samuel Wells and Nelson Sizer, ran the phrenological business and publishing house Fowlers & Wells in New York City.
Lorenzo travelled to England in 1860 with his wife Lydia and daughter Jessie and lectured widely in Britain. He lectured at the International Exhibition of 1862 and then returned briefly to New York. He then emigrated to Britain to enjoy the rich phrenological interest and founded the Fowler Institute, Ludgate Circus, London, in 1863.
Here he and his family and employees gave practical instruction on phrenology, provided readings and character analyses and offered weekly courses on practical phrenology. He also sold phrenological literature and the now universally famous phrenological head busts. The Institute also had its own circulating and reference library and a museum of skulls and casts. In 1886 he established and was President of the the British Phrenological Association.
Lorenzo spent much of his life in England where he initiated the famous phrenological publishing house, L.N Fowler & Co., and gained considerable fame with his phrenology head, a china head showing the phrenological faculties, which has become a symbol of the discipline.
A close friend of L.N. Fowler was James Web. L.N. Fowler was president of the British Phrenology Society in 1886, 1887 and 1889. James Webb was president in 1890 and 1891. The walking cane was presented to L.N. Fowler in 1890 and, on his return to the USA, the cane was left with James Webb. L. N. Fowler never returned to England and died at his sister home in New Jersey, USA in 1896. At the time James Webb was headmaster of Leyton Boarding School and the walking cane was acquired in the 1950’s from a house clearance in the Leyton area of London. (Reference to James Webb’s is made in The History of Phrenology by John van Wyhe and the Harvard University Library Marshall Phrenological Collection).
Prior to living in England L.N. Fowler attended Amherst College, MA, USA, one of the premier liberal arts colleges in America. Amherst College have previously offered to display Fowler’s cane, having sent the following correspondence, “In addition to the Fowler-Amherst connection, the College also has a long tradition of presenting a cane to each member of the graduating class. We would be delighted to add this item to our large Objects Collection here in the Archives. We already have examples of full-size phrenological heads, and this cane would make a fine complement to those objects”.
Addition requests have also be made by US medical establishments and museums.
The overall condition is superb with only the slightest age crazing to the ceramic head. Overall length 39.5 inches, approx 100cm. Ceramic Head length 3.5 inches, approx 9cm.
There will be no postage charge to the buyer, worldwide.