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Rockwell's Patent Vault Light - Mechanic's Magazine 1834
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    ROCKWELL'S PATENT VAULT LIGHT. -- Every citizen is aware that the common vault light, or grating, which may be seen on our sidewalks at every few steps, are not only unsightly to the eye, but often positively dangerous. Very frequently they are found loose, often broken, with a bar or two out, and in winter so slippery as to render it hazardous to step upon them. Cross section of vault showing Rockwell's Patent Vault Light Independent of these considerations, by their openness to permit rain, snow, and dirt, to pass into the vault, and render them wet, cold, and filthy, the advantages of Rockwell's Patent Light are many. There is nothing unsightly in their appearance; but, on the contrary, they are ornamental, -- are made to set secure in stone, and immoveable, except when it is necessary to remove them. The passenger may put his foot upon them with perfect security; and while they keep the vault dry, and permit ventilation to go on, possess, in addition, this advantage: they furnish, by means of the glass in the centre, light to enter, and from its convex shape, to radiate on all sides, thus giving light to the vault. Outside street view of Rockwell's Patent Vault LightsFig. 1 shows the vault, and the pipe through which air is admitted. This pipe can be stopped up in winter if necessary, or converted into a chimney. Fig. 2 is intended to represent the appearance outside, covering a space of 25 feet in the street.
    Mr. Rockwell, the inventor, has also made these vault lights without ventilation holes, which are admirably adapted for vegetable vaults, where light only is required, thus excluding all cold and wet, but serving as windows to light these hitherto dark apartments.
    The durability of this light, compared with the common vault covering, will be found to bear no comparison with the difference in price, which is little more than the most common in use, independent of its superior qualities.
    Persons about to build, or those who would wish to improve their vaults, may see this simple, yet beautiful and economical improvement, in front of the Exchange, where two of them have been placed over vaults, -- in front of the New-York Gazette, -- or at the store of the proprietor, Broadway, near John Street.