IMPROVEMENT IN FOOT-WARMERS
WILLIAM TELL STEIGER
Patented Jan. 16, 1877
To all whom it may concern:
Be it known that I, William Tell Steiger, of Howard country, and
the State of Maryland, have made a new and useful invention in a
"Pedal Calorificator" or "Foot Warmer," which invention is fully set
forth in the following specification and drawing, (on a reduced
scale,) in which--
Figure I represents
the combination and parts.
As explanatory of the object of my invention I have to remark, that
it is a well-established fact that our lungs constitute the laboratory
of nature, within which--by a condensing process--animal heat is
generated, and afterward conveyed and distributed to other portions of
our bodies by the action of the heart and circulation of the blood;
that for mechanical reasons the supply to the extremities--the hands
and the feet--on account of their distance from the center of the
heat, is more or less deficient, and, consequently, they suffer most
when exposed to severe outward cold; the feet, especially, by reason
of their immediate contact, in winter weather, with cold floors, as in
railroad cars and other vehicles, and with the frozen ground and icy
Now, I find, by personal experiment, that by breathing for a short
time on the bulb of a thermometer I am enabled to raise the mercury to
88o Fahrenheit--only 10o below blood-heat--which I, therefore, assume
to be the natural temperature of the breath, and hence, if we suppose
the outer air to be at freezing-point, (32o,) we have a difference of
56o excess of temperature, which, in the action of breathing, is
totally dissipated and lost in the open air.
My invention aims at economizing and utilizing this wasted heat by
any simple contrivance for conveying it to our feet, where it is so
much needed, one device for which, found by practical experiment to
answer very will, but, of course, subject to modifications.
I will now proceed to describe my invention.
In the accompanying drawing, Fig. I, A B B represent a light
flexible india-rubber tube, from one-fourth to half an inch or more
caliber, to be worn between the outer and inner garments. It is
branched at C, and extends from near the wearer's chin to his feet,
the upper end of the portion A (which may be of double capacity of B)
being furnished with a conical or trumpet mouth-piece, a--either of
india rubber, molded solid with the tube, hard wood, or ornamental
bone, (metal would be too cold)--within easy reach, and when not in
use concealed by the waist-coat.
S S are two movable hair-pads or cork inner soles--such as in
common use--to be inserted in the boots or shoes, and to which the
branch tubes B B are either permanently attached or made fast for
convenience by loops and buttons at b b under the inside hollows of
the feet when in place, and so as to discharge obliquely forward
toward the toes.
A suspension neck-collar or ribbon, D, attached at C or upper
portion of the tube A, completes the arrangement, except that a stiff
rubber plate may be permanently attached to the tubes (or molded with
them) at their junction C, to strengthen their connection and receive
the date of the patent, &c., as shown in Fig. II, enlarged.
In very cold nights it is often found difficult to keep the feet
comfortable in bed, especially in the case of invalids or persons of
cold temperament, and, as a consequence, they spend sleepless nights.
To obviate the annoyance the above-described apparatus may be used,
if preferred; but a single tube of good capacity, reaching from the
mouth to the region of the feet, will be all sufficient to secure
relief and comfort, and may be found more convenient.
I have found, by actual experience, that the tubes in a short time
become warmed by the body, so that little heat of the breath is lost
in its passage to the feet; that , accordingly, the air I had is
delivered in boot or shoe with a temperature of about 84o
Fahrenheit--with a lost of only 4o.
After a few sharp blasts of breath at the beginning--which may be
repeated at intervals--it becomes only necessary to inhale naturally
with closed, and exhale with open, lips--an easy process, which I have
ascertained practically may be kept up for a long time, as, for
example, for miles on a railroad-car, without much personal
What I claim as my invention, and desire to secure by Letters
The combination of tubes extending from a mouth-piece, and
foot-coverings, for utilizing the warmth of the breath during
respiration, as set forth.
WILLIAM TELL STEIGER.