True or False? Baby cages were hung outside apartment windows.
Built and distributed in London to the members of the Chelsea Baby Club in 1937, the ‘Baby Cage’ was meant for women with children that were without a backyard, garden, or terrace for their children to play in or on.
When secured from a window, the baby cage hung from the side of a building, giving children safe access to fresh air and sunlight through the cage’s wire frame, and room to play with toys. And here’s the kicker, it was designed by a woman, Emma Read of Spokane, Washington, according to a patent filed in 1922.
The patent also notes that the baby cage could have even doubled as a place for children to sleep, with removable curtains working to prevent unwanted drafts. “It is well known that a great many difficulties rise in raising, and properly housing babies and small children in crowded cities, that is to say from the health viewpoint. With these facts in view, it is the purpose of this invention to provide an article of manufacture for babies and young children, to be suspended upon the exterior of a building adjacent an open window, wherein the baby or young child may be placed.” states the description of the patent, which was granted on March 13, 1923.
The figures associated with the patent show a baby cage similar to that seen in the picture below, but with a slanted overlapping roof piece said to protect the babies locked inside from rain or snow. If her design had taken off, and baby cages had been installed in other cities, the roof would have also served to protect the baby from anything falling from the floors of baby cages above.