Lead apron, for use as protection for X-ray technician, 1920 to 1958
A layer of lead is incorporated into this apron. It helps protect the wearer, an X-ray technician, from harmful radiation. It became standard protective equipment. The apron is made of cloth. With the lead, it weighs around five kilos. It is seen with a pair of protective gloves (A606876). These are also lead lined.
X-rays were discovered in 1895 by Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen (1845-1923). X-rays were so-called because the nature of the newly discovered rays was unknown. The first committee to investigate possible ill effects of X-rays was formed three years later in 1898. Reports of burns and dermatitis due to the rays were frequent by this date.