Historical information

The fireplace was the main heating source for small houses before 1900, so a bellows to coax a flame from a dying fire was important. They would also be used to keep the fire going in a woodfire oven for cooking. In later cooking ranges, domestic water supply was also heated through the cooking range so bellows helped to maintaing a supply of hot water. These bellows were handcrafted by Mr James Ripper, a great uncle of Mrs. Jean Raper.


An item of signifance throughout Australia, bellows were used in homes to coax a domestic fire into flame for heating and cooking purposes. It was probably used in late 19th to early 20th century homes.

Physical description

A set of hand carved wooden bellows. Each side of the bellows was crafted from one piece of timber. The bellows were joined with leather, brass studs and a metal nozzle.