Gas lamp tech not so new

May 27, 2011
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Reading the article about the “new” technology to turn the gas lamps off during the day brought back memories of my since-passed elderly neighbor (“Gas lamps to turn off by day,” May 13). Carl made a living as a gas lamp lighter in his day, and told of how the job changed when they invented a wind-up timer that would turn the lights up at night and down during the day. His job after that invention went from nightly lighting runs to winding the clock every seven days and maintaining the mantles. Then they invented the “frittercell” as he called it (the photocell), which enabled them to install electric street lights and put him out of a job completely. History repeats itself?

Peg Preble
Jamaica Plain

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