This is a near-complete Roman Catholic sick-call kit which was used by priests to administer the Last Rites to the dying. This was a popular commercial variety manufactured by The Homan Silver Plate Company of Cincinnati. Included in the oak box with purple lining is an accompanying booklet (c1897) which gives precise instructions as to the purpose of each item, how to set it up for the priest and dozens of testimonials from religious hierarchy extolling its virtues and usefulness. Included is a tiny bottle marked 'Water from Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto Lourdes France Holy Cross Monastery Mt. Adams, Cincinnati, O' (unfortunately, empty) which appears to be a replacement for the original holy water glass bottle. Apart from this and absence of the linen napkin and communion cloth, this box is remarkably complete. The cross candlestick holders and font fit into the lid and come apart; the clip at the top is not completely secure and possibly could be replaced if desired. This then fits into the base which has its place on the bottom of the box. There are two silvered plates marked with IHS, a gold-lined spoon cup for washing the fingers of the priest, a silver-handled hold water sprinkle (brush) and two early candles. Included in the box is a boxed set of Blessed candles. The exterior of the box is of oak and is decorated with a cross in the centre of the top and decorative corner panels and lock. It is apparently rare for the original booklet with instructions and amazing testimonials to still be present although the condition of this one is somewhat fragile, but readable. This would be a fantastic item to collect or possibly use and is most certainly an emotive and intriguing piece for its intended purpose. Box measures width 8.5 ins(26.6cm) x depth 11.5 ins (29.3cm) x height 4.75 ins (11.7cm). Weight 2.55 kgs.
This item appears in my book, “Antique Boxes, Inside & Out” on page 191.
Insured Air Mail Post with tracking to the USA would be $60.00 USD - with no tracking is cheaper. For shipping cost to other countries, please contact us.
The Homan Silver Plate Company Sick-Call Outfit, c1897
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