William Southwell's Pianoforte Patent of 1821 (No. 4546)
The National Archives, UK, C54/9970

Patent Drawing

1821 patent drawing

Transcription of the Specification from the Patent Rolls

[New lines in the original document are indicated by  ‘/’ ]

Folio 1

To all to whom these Presents shall come /
I William Southwell
of Gresse Street Rathbone Place /
in the County of Middlesex Piano forte Manufacturer /
send Greeting whereas his most excellent Majesty King /
George the fourth did by his letters patent under the /
Great Seal of [deleted:] Great Britain [then:] that part of the United /
Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland called England /
bearing date at Westminster the fifth day of April in /
the second year of his reign give and grant unto /
the said William Southwell my Exors admors and assigns /
his especial licence full power sole privilege and /
authority that I the said William Southwell my exors /
admors and assigns during the term of years therein /
mentioned should and lawfully might make use exercise /
and vend within England Wales and the Town of /
Berwick upon Tweed my Invention of certain Improvements /
on Cabinet Piano Fortes In which said Letters Patent /
there is contained a proviso that if I the said William /
Southwell shall not particularly describe and ascertain the /
nature of my said Invention and in what manner the /
same is to be performed by an Instrument in Writing /
under my hand and seal and cause the same to /
be inrolled [sic] in his Majesty’s High Court of Chancery /
within two Calendar Months next and immediately after /
the date of the said Letters patent that then the /
said Letters patent and all liberties and advantages /
whatsoever thereby granted shall utterly cease determine /
and become void as in and by the same relation being /
thereunto had may more fully and at large appear. /
Now know ye that in compliance with the said /
proviso I the said William Southwell do hereby declare /
that the nature of my said Invention and the manner /
in which the same is performed are particularly /
described and ascertained in and by the drawings /
hereunto annexed and the following description thereof /
that is to say –––––––––––––––– /
The drawing is composed of all the different parts /
of the action of one Key and as numbers of the /
said part are not new it is only necessary to mark /
the distinction by specifying the new parts only–––––––– /

[Explanatory note: At this point the patent drawing is inserted into the Patent Roll, rather than being included separately, as is the case for the 1794, 1798 and 1811 Southwell patents]

Folio 2
First –– Letter A. marked on the plan or /
Drawing is a sticker in front similar in appearance /
to those in other Cabinet Piano fortes but very /
preferable in its advantages as it can be taken off and /
put on in an instant by means of a small Screw and /
steady pin which fixes it to the butt of the Hammer at /
B going through a small piece of wood at C which /
piece of wood and the sticker A are connected together /
by a single leather joint, the said sticker A has at its /
upper end a small [deleted:] space left [then:] part left square about /
the sixteenth part of an inch which raises the /
Hammer up with greater powers when power is given /
to the key, there must be a small piece of cloth /
or other soft substance in that part as in the /
Drawing to prevent noise D. is a back sticker one /
quarter of an Inch from the strings a little more /
or less and on the end is put leather or other soft /
material to prevent noise in raising the Damper E /
at the same end is glued a block of wood F /
to receive a wire G which is turned square at the /
upper end to raise the check lever H, the said wire /
works in a socket I to keep it steady and to /
prevent noise it must be bushed with a soft /
material the lower end rests as a dead weight on /
the key guided by a rack or socket in the [deleted:] lower [then:] /
leaver rail K with a piece of cloth or leather /
stretched along the leaver rail it may be either /
tacked or glued. –––– Another piece of the same /
stretched along the top of the round pins L /
with a fine tack in each of the said pins they /
must be glued in round holes made in the /
said Rail ––––- When the key is put in /
motion it raises the chock lever H and puts /
down the other end of the check M and /
receives the end of the hammer after the stroke /
is given which completely prevents the hammer /
from doubleing [sic] or rebounding against the strings /
the said hammers may be longer than what /
can be used in any other Cabinet Piano Fortes /
by that means the blow is most powerfull [sic] /
and clear ––––––––––– Letter N is a Ruler /
going from side to side of the Instrument /
and fastens to the uprights at each side by /
bolts hooks and eyes or in any more convenient /
manner so as to take off and on with ease /
the said Ruler should have an Iron Bar either /
back or front or any other method that may be /
lighter to keep it from altering there should be /
endwood groved [sic] in along the ruler where is to /
receive a wire and is the [Illegible word: ? center] that the catch /
acts upon ––––––––––the hole must be bushed /
with cloth or other suitable material leather and /
small wires screwed or otherwise fastened in at as /
many parts are found necessary with a small /
turn at the end to keep down the wire in the /
grove [sic] which is marked O in the drawing P. /
is a piece of Lead to keep the lever always /
down at that end, the said lever to be three /
eighths of an inch or thereabouts wide which /
leaves room for the fastenings between them /
although in the above description I have mentioned /
certain sizes shapes and materials yet I do not /
confine myself as these may be varied at the /
pleasure of the workman and any other /
substituted that will effect the same end In /
whereof I have hereunto set my hand /
and seal the fourth day of May in the year /
of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and twenty one. /

––––––––––––------Wm. Southwell––––––––––––––––– /

In margin: Campbell.
And be it remembered
that on /
the fourth day of May in the year of our /
Lord 1821. the aforesaid William Southwell came /
before our said Lord the King in his Chancery /
and acknowledged the Specification aforesaid and /
all and every thing therein contained and specified /
in form above written and also the specification /
aforesaid was stamped according to the tenor of /
the Statute made for that purpose––––––––––– /

Inrolled the fourth day of /
June in the year of our Lord /
One thousand eight hundred and /
twenty one. /

[Transcribed by Margaret and Michael Debenham; and by George Bozarth (versions cross-checked, 2008)]

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