Short Slightly Modern Gilt Schoolhouse Chain Pendant, c1940 Item # R1291
While one can never be quite sure about such things, the clean and almost severe styling of the canopy and shadeholder of this schoolhouse pendant hint that it might be a little later in the time range for such fixtures. Combined with the simple rounded shade, the look is more modern than most.
The pendant or semi-flush lights often called "schoolhouse fixtures" are defined by their large white (or "opal") diffusing glass shades and simple designs. These fixtures first rose to popularity around 1920 and were common well into the 1950s. They were certainly found in schoolhouses, but were also installed in pretty much any commercial or institutional setting where high levels of illumination were desired at low cost. From plain and super-simple to dressed up with flourishes and decorated glass, there is a schoolhouse fixture for most any setting.
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