Sidewalk Prisms

Developed in the 19th century, sidewalk prisms originated from deck prisms found on ships. Allowing light to filter into darkened spaces during the day, the prisms also permitted light from below deck at night.

The use of sidewalk prisms declined with the introduction of affordable electric lighting. Despite this, an abundance of prism remnants remain today, embedded in sidewalks and street corners.

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Megan Kennedy