Decopix Art Deco Patent of the Week – Honeywell Chronotherm (1943)

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This Streamlined Deco Chronotherm thermostat had a short life, patented in 1943 and replaced no later than 1947. If you thought (as I did) that those were the years of plentiful cheap energy or that people weren’t paying attention to how much they used, you’d be wrong.

How wrong? Well, in 1940, this thermostat held the promise of saving energy for just “$18 more” than a non-clock thermostat. That brought the price tag to $29, or $482.79, today. What you got for nearly $500 was impressive, though. This Chronotherm weighed in at almost 4 pounds and had a miniaturized Telechron digital clock inside.

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Whether it was the design, the price or both, this version of the Chronotherm didn’t last and by 1947 Honeywell went back to a simpler box with a regular clock, here endorsed by Linda Darnell. The new model was $39.50 in 1949, a still hefty $386.82, today. For its streamlined good looks and an endorsement from the fallen angel herself, the Chronotherm is Decopix patent of the week.

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