Context

Context of (a) Prosthetic right arm below-elbow, leather, wood, metal; laced leather socket with ventilation holes, shoulder saddle suspension, contoured wooden plug at the end of the socket which fit the counters of designer's residual limb. The energy transmission system consists of a leather strap that runs down the arm, passes through the wooden block and forms a loop, which would work very well when using long handled tools such as rakes and hoes. The arm also has felxible elbow hinges and a tricep pad. The metal hardware is something that would typically be found on horse harnesses. Arm belonged to Mr. Volney Brainard, probably designed by same. Mr. Brainard lost his right arm in a saw mill accident some time around 1900. He was a carpenter, wood carver and inventor. He lived for many years in Friendship, New York, and died in the early 1950's. Found by donor hanging in a granary in 1965, he estimates the arm was placed there c. 1940s.(b) Corresponding 1916 Pittsburgh Orthopedic Co. catalog
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