993.137.1: Branston Violet Ray High Frequency Generator, 1901-1940

Additional Images

993.137.1: Branston Violet Ray High Frequency Generator.
Image No. 2929 ; Photographer: Helen Kingsley

Object Description

Cased electro-therapeutical apparatus with one metal electrode and 4 high frequency violet ray surface electrodes [sealed glass tubes] used for: internal and external throat, eye and general surface [broken]. A ribbon with the product name 'Branston Violet Ray High Frequency Generator' is attached to the inner lid padding. A lever and dial are used to regulate the current strength, with 2 lengths of electrical cords ending in a Bakelite electrode handle and plug. A metal plate is attached giving manufacturer's details and model type and number 'MODEL 25 NO 11830'. Incomplete, 1 glass electrode missing. Case dimensions given.

Object Classification

Accession Number: 993.137.1
Collection: Therapeutics
Date: 1901-1940

Object Dimensions

  • Length: 36.5 cm
  • Height: 18 cm
  • Width: 27 cm

Object Parts

  • a) Lined hinged case with leather handle, current lever and dial, electrical mechanism, 2 electrical cords with plug and electrode handle
  • b) External throat electrode
  • c) Eye electrode
  • d) Internal throat electrode
  • e) General surface electrode
  • f) Metal electrode

Object Materials

  • Bakelite,
  • chrome plate,
  • copper alloy,
  • cork,
  • glass,
  • leather,
  • metal,
  • plating,
  • rubber,
  • steel,
  • textile,
  • velvet,
  • wood

Acquisition Detail

  • Manufacturer: Branston Co., Chas. A.
  • History of Use: This set was used to apply high frequency electrical sparks to the body using the glass vacuum electrodes. It was believed to relieve aches and pains in the muscles, internal organs and the nerves [rheumatism] by massaging the surface of the skin with the electrode and it was also used for treating various skin conditions. This was a highly popular home treatment in the first half of the 20th century.