Right below elbow prosthesis made for a lady pianist, Elizabeth Burton. Blocked leather socket connected by jointed side steels to a long leather upper arm corset with four strap and buckle fastenings. Large wing nut on inner side of elbow, to lock the joint. Shaped wooden oval wrist with detachable wooden hand. Wide spread fingers, the index, middle and ring being shorter than normal, both thumb and little finger tips are padded. This design allowed the wearer to span an octave of a piano and was made by a Mr Rowden of Abington St, Northampton, c.1903-4.
The one-time wearer of this very specialised artificial arm was Elizabeth Burton. Born in the 1860s, she became a music teacher based Northampton. Her hand and much of her forearm was removed after she accidently ran a fishbone deep beneath her thumbnail and it became infected. Made by a local surgical instrument maker, it is believed that this prosthesis allowed Elizabeth to continue her musical career. Our records tantalisingly suggest she wore this arm when playing in concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall in 1906.