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Macfarlane's Castings

Mitchell Library, Glasgow Collection

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Macfarlane's Castings

An ironfounder's fantasy view of a main street featuring a wide range of cast iron products. The illustration is taken from Walter Macfarlane & Co's catalogue published c 1883.

Macfarlane's customers included local authorities and private companies. Lamp posts, urinals and horse troughs were of interest to the former and it was hoped that interest of shopkeepers would be attracted by the pillars, shop fronts and balconies produced at the Saracen Foundry.

A considerable amount of the firm's architectural fountains, crestings and railings were destroyed after being requisitioned during the Second World War, as raw material for the war industries and to boost public morale. The ill-considered scheme resulted in the unnecessary destruction of much of Britain's ornamental street furniture, as the material was mostly unsuitable for use in manufacturing munitions and was consequently consigned to rust away in scrap yards around the country. Many more cast iron features were removed in the 1960's due to high maintainance costs.

Reference: Mitchell Library, GC f672.2506541443 MCF

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning

cast iron, foundries, horse troughs, horses and carts, iron founders, lamp posts, ornamental ironwork, railings, Saracen Foundry, Second World War, street lighting, trade catalogues, urinals, Walter Macfarlane & Co

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