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1950s by Moe Light. Just 5 high
Out of stock
I’m very pleased to offer this impressive 1950s surface-mounted ceiling fixture by Moe Light!
Two brothers, Henrik and Ole Moe, helped to found the Milwaukee-based Moe-Bridges lighting company in 1919. Later friction among various shareholders resulted in the brothers leaving the company in the late 1920s, and founding Moe Brothers Manufacturing.
In 1938, the company relocated to Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin, after the city agreed to sell land – adjacent to an all-important railroad line – to the company for one dollar. Moreover, the city built a modern plant (at 700 Oak Street), with the understanding that the company would pay rent of $1,800 for twenty years. The company was able to hire one hundred employees (no small figure in the Depression), and this increased to one hundred fifty two years later. In 1946, the company was able to pay off the bonds used to finance the Moe plant.
However, as was common, the company struggled to survive after the war years (where they made grenades, bazooka and bullet shells, anti-tank mines, and other military equipment). In 1948, Lee B. Thomas stepped in to save the company. In 1953, the corporation name was changed to Thomas Industries, although the lighting fixtures still carried the Moe Light brand label, and were marketed as such.
By 1963, Thomas was the largest employer in Fort Atkinson with 540 employees and sales of $41,000,000.
The Fort Atkinson plant was closed in 1986. But it wasn’t that long ago that this factory – like countless such factories across America – was teeming with life, and supporting millions of families. This, back when America actually made stuff. And quality stuff at that.
One image is from their 1959 catalog, and the fixture was priced at $7.95! Ahhh, what a different era. I know you laugh at the price, but you could buy similar fixtures, although not quite as nicely detailed, for half the price. So, this fixture was pricey in its day.
The fixture was also made in the USA. Remember that far, far away time?
The shade is quite striking. It has four very beautiful flowers. Lovely. The flowers are clear glass but with – and this is important – gold sparkles applied to the inner surface of the glass. Sparkles! Very nice.
There’s also a distinctive gold band at the edge of the fixture. It’s remarkable that this remains intact.
Please also note the oversize, and original, finial. Don’t you think these small touches make all the difference?
The fixture is but 5-inches tall, so is ideal for low ceilings. The shade is 14-inches wide, so was meant for a normal-size living/dining room, or bedroom (Moe also offered 12- and 16-inch versions).
The fixture has a two-bulb cluster, offering a total of 120W.
Amazingly, the original Moe ceiling bracket is included, and the original mounting nuts!
This fixture is ready to hang, and comes with all the mounting hardware needed!
DETAILS: The fixture accepts two standard base 60W bulbs.
COLOR: White and gold.
SIZE: See above.
- I love writing this: there’s no damage.
- The socket cluster is original (and in fine shape).
- The wiring is original, modern plastic, and also in fine shape.
- The canopy is, I believe, brass, and retains its original protective varnish in excellent condition. The varnish on the finial button has been removed.
SHIPPING: Insured shipping in the Continental US will be…FREE!