Offered for sale here is a Clarke Carbon Carriage Heater No 5B made by the Chicago Flexible Shaft Company of Chicago Illinois. This type of foot warmer was used in buggies, sleds and carriages well up until World War II depending somewhat on where you lived. Where I lived in Northern Canada, the heater received frequent use until modern times. The big feature of the Clarke heaters was that the company had developed a carbon coal block from natural dried hardwoods that when heated in a brisk fire would stay hot for ten to twelve hours under the most cold conditions. They claimed the brick would last up to twenty five percent longer than any competitive fire block. A full cake or briquette, as we would know them today, would last up to twelve hours which was long enough to cover any trip to almost any where you would want to go in Northern Saskatchewan. Indeed, the briquettes did reduce the need to stop at neighbouring farm houses along the way to add hot coals or ashes to the heater tray. This heater is in excellent, near new condition and features a slide out tray which still holds an original Clark Carbon brick along with the original instructions on how to use the charcoal piece. The outer covering consists of a worsted wool material that is in excellent shape with no stains or rust marks of any kind. Overall the heater is in remarkable condition given its age and is a testament to how correctly stored it has remained over the decades. In the old days a user would preheat the coal and deftly place it in the drawer and shut the drawer. Handles conveniently placed on the sides allowed the user to carry the heater to the buggy box and place it below the seat. In practice, you would place your feet on the heater and cover your legs with a blanket – actually a buffalo robe was preferred. This heater is entirely original and in solid condition with all of its original old hardware. It measures 111/2 inches long, 7 1/4 inches wide and 4 1/4 inches tall. Interestingly, in 1895 Chicago smoke regulations caused the company to move the manufacture of the briquettes to another location in the country. The company would go on to became the massive Sunbeam corporation.