Wheeled devices used to transport infants and children are generally divided into prams, used for newborn babies in which the infant normally lies down facing the pusher, and the strollers, which are used for the small child up to about three years old in a sitting position facing forward.
William Kent developed an early stroller in 1733. In 1733, the Duke of Devonshire asked Kent to build a means of transport that would carry his children. Kent obliged by constructing a shell-shaped basket on wheels that the children could sit in. This was richly decorated and meant to be pulled by a goat or small pony. Benjamin Potter Crandall sold baby carriages in the US in the 1830s which have been described as the “first baby carriages manufactured in the US.” Another early development was F.A. Whitney Carriage Company. His son, Jesse Armour Crandall was issued a number of patents for improvements and additions to the standard models. These included adding a brake to carriages, a model which folded, designs for parasols and an umbrella hanger. By 1840, the baby carriage became extremely popular.
The carriages of those days were built of wood or wicker and held together by expensive brass joints. These sometimes became heavily ornamented works of art. Models were also named after royalty: Princess and Duchess being popular names, as well as Balmoral and Windsor.
In June 1889, William H. Richardson patented his idea of the first reversible stroller. The bassinet was designed so it could face out or in towards the parent. He also made structural changes to the carriage. Until then the axle did not allow each wheel to move separately. Richardson’s design allowed this, which increased maneuverability of the carriages. As the 1920s began, prams were now available to all families and were becoming safer, with larger wheels, brakes, deeper prams, and lower, sturdier frames. (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baby_transport; Viewed: 11/1/2020)
The DCHS wicker baby carriage (Baby Buggy) was found stored in the cupola of the original Jane M. Case hospital. (The house was later the Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity house and in 2018 was named the Andrews House after the first occupant and builder of the house.) From 1888 – 1903, the Samuel Lybrand Family lived in this home on Lots 36 and 49 which is the South West Corner of Winter and Franklin Streets in Delaware.”
Samuel and wife Isabella Lybrand had one son; Edwin G. (16 years of age) listed in the 1880 census. Samuel, who was the President of the Delaware Chair Company, died in 1895.
In the 1900 census, Isabella and G. Edward Lybrand are still living in the house on 39 W. Winter Street, which is now called the Andrews House. Living with them is Mary Lybrand, wife, who is reported as never having a live birth, which was part of the 1900 census reports. (Isabella died in 1901.) In the 1905 Delaware City Directory, finds Ed. G Lybrand, Lawyer, is living at 25 Franklin. Lybrand sold the home to the Hospital trustees on August 1, 1904, 1-1/2 months after his wife died. Edwin died in 1906.
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