US 2175604 A
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Oct. 10, 1939. Riv. HOLMES MINIATURE THEATER Filed Aug. 8, 1938 INVENTOR 2 Hal/129,5 Wflgeii 4} ATTORNEY Patented Oct. 10, 1939 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 6 Claims.
This invention relates to miniature theaters and particularly to a stage for such a theater on which figures such as dolls, etc., taking the parts of characters may be mounted on and moved about in any direction. over the stage,
An object of the present invention is to provide a stage for a miniature theater having a plurality of slots formed therein so that small dolls or other characters may be mounted on the stage and actuated in a realistic manner by a rod or other member attached to the character and extending through one of the slots to below the stage far enough to be manipulated by an operator,
Another object of the invention is to provide a weight on the lower end of the rod attached to a character suflicient to support the character in its upright position.
A feature of importance of the invention is that the rod is detachably attached to its character or mounting therefor, preferably in a manner to conceal the rod and to permit the attachment to be made interchangeably and conveniently to the particular characters as they may be required.
And another feature that is advantageous is that the rod may be of wire bent around the weight to hold the weight securely in place, the upper end of the Wire being formed into an open loop slidably fitting a recess within a character mounting and frictionally retained therein by the resilience of the loop.
With the above and other objects in view the invention may include the features of construction and operation set forth in the following specification and illustrated in the accompanying drawing.
In the accompanying drawing annexed hereto and forming a part of this specification, I have shown the invention embodied in a miniature theater, the operation of which can be controlled from in rear of the stage by a single person, but it will be understood that the invention can be otherwise embodied and that the drawing is not to be construed as defining or limiting the scope of the invention, the claims appended to this specification being relied upon for that purpose.
In the drawing:
Fig. l is a plan view of one form of a stage forming a part of the miniature theater,
Fig 2 is a front elevation of the stage showing several characters in position thereon,
Fig. 3 is a front elevation of one of the characters shown in Fig. 2 but upon an enlarged scale.
Fig. 4 is a plan view of the mounting for a character such as shown in Figs. 2 and 3.
Fig. 5 is a vertical sectional View of the character mounting shown in Fig. 4 taken on the plane of line 5-5. 5
Fig. 6 is an isometric view of the weighted rod or supporting member for a character.
Fig. 7 is a vertical sectional view of the stage taken on the plane of line 'l-l in Fig. 1, and
Fig. 8 is a fragmentary plan view of another 10. preferred form of stage.
In the above mentioned drawing there has been shown but one embodiment of the invention which is now deemed preferable, but it is to be understood that changes and modifications may 15 be made within the scope of the appended claims without departing from the spirit of the invention.
Briefly, and in its preferred aspect, the invention may include the following principal parts: 20 First, a stage formed of wood, metal or moulded material having a plane upper surface, there being a large number of narrow slots extending generally across the stage, there being some slots however that extend obliquely up and down stage; 25 second, characters in the form of persons, animals, etc., mounted upon small blocks; third,
a weight rod extending through a slot,,there being a detachable connection between the upper end thereof and the block for one of the characters; 30 and fourth, a metal weight permanently attached to the rod at its lowermost end.
Referring more in detail to the figures of the drawing at It) there is shown a stage having a plane upper surface having a plurality of parallel 35 and intersecting slots ll extending entirely through the stage. These slots Il may be arranged as desired and are preferably disposed so that characters I2 may be moved about to different parts of the stage as called for by the par- 40 ticular act being performed. At the corners of the stage H are posts l3 to support the stage at a convenient height. Also these posts may be extended above the stage to support an enclosure therefor and from which back and side drops, 45 wings and other theatrical effects may be supported. At the extreme back stage are a plurality of parallel grooves 9 extending only partially through the stage II] into which the back drops may be fitted to aid in retaining them in place. 50
Figs. 1 and 8 show two forms of a stage or slotted platform which may be employed for the theater. Each of these has substantially similar slots extending generally over the area of the stage and grooves closely adjacent each other at the rear of the stage. In 8 which is the preferred form, the stage has its greatest width at the rear.
Each character l2 as indicated in the figures is mounted upon a small block l4 preferably of wood or other material to which a character may be conveniently attached. As shown in Figs. 4 and 5 the character illustrated has a staple I5 enclosing tightly its shoe or foot and driven into the block l4.
Depending from the mounting or block I4 is a rod l6 which in operation extends through one of the slots H. The lower end of the rod has attached to it a weight I! preferably of metal and of suflicient mass or weight to support the character to which it is attached in operative or upright position. As shown the rod I6 is in the form of a wire which may be wrapped tightly around its weight H, the end of the wire being coiled about the rod to permanently retain the weight ll in position on its rod l6.
At its upper end the rod I6 is bent to form a horizontal open loop 18 adapted to enter a slot l9 cut into the lower surface of the block M so that the rod IE will be frictionally retained therein by the resilience of the wire forming the loop l8.
In operating the theater and with the scenery and enclosure (not shown) in place, the required characters l2 at one side of the stage and mounted on their blocks 14 are attached to their rods It. This may be done by passing one of the rods l6 upward through a slot H and sliding the loop l8 into the slot l9 of the block. This character may then be moved to any part of the stage by the operator grasping the rod It or weight I! below the stage from the rear thereof. If desired, however, and the slots II are made sufficiently wide to accommodate the weight I! and its rod IS, the characters [2 necessary for an act may all be mounted on rods l6 and the weighted end of the rods passed through the slot H.
I claim as my invention:
1. A miniature theater having in combination a stage provided with a plurality of slots extendtachably attached individually at their upper ends within said blocks and extending through said slots, whereby said characters may be supported in upright position and moved about said stage from below the stage.
2. A miniature theater having in combination a stage provided with a plurality of parallel and oblique intercepting slots extending therethrough, characters movable over said stage and mounted thereon upon blocks resting on said stage, and weighted depending rods detachably attached individually at their upper ends to said blocks and extending through said slots, whereby said characters may be supported in upright position and moved about said stage from below the stage.
3. A miniature theater having in combination a stage provided with a plurality of slots extending therethrough, characters movable over said stage and mounted thereon upon blocks resting on said stage, depending rods detachably attached individually at their upper ends to said blocks and extending through said slots, and weights attached individually to the lower ends of said rods.
4. A character mounting for miniature theaters having a slotted stage, blocks adapted to rest on said stage and having characters individually mounted in fixed position thereon, and weighted rods detachably attached individually to the lower surfaces of said blocks and extending below said stage.
5. A character mounting for miniature theaters having a slotted stage, blocks adapted to rest on said stage and having characters individually mounted in fixed position thereon, and rods having weights at their lower ends detachably attached individually at their upper ends to said blocks.
6. A character mounting for miniature theaters having a slotted stage, blocks slotted in their lower surfaces adapted to rest on said stage and having characters individually mounted in fixed position thereon, and weighted rods having loops at their upper ends and adapted to enter the slots in said blocks and support said characters in upright positions.
RUTH V. HOLMES.