FROM THEN TO NOW-STROLLER HISTORY

Baby Strollers have been with us for a very long time. You can see them everywhere you go. Be it on the street, in a shopping mall, in a restaurant or in a park. When you were a kid you were in one of it everyday. You also might put your children in it everyday so you may take them with you wherever you go. 

Chances are while you push your baby down the street in that Metro baby stroller, you aren’t thinking about how that stroller came to be. Turns out there’s a lot of history that launched the creation of the stroller, and it all started with an English architect in the 1700s.

The first stroller created by an english architect

1700S: horse-drawn baby carriages

At first, it was not called a baby stroller as it wasn’t meant to be strolled around. William Kent invented the first “Baby Stroller” in 1733. He was asked to create a transportation device to bring amusement to the young ones. W. Kent designed it for the 3rd Duke of Devonshire’s children. It was in fact a baby carriage, where the carriage was intended to be pulled by a dog, a goat or a miniature horse. That’s why it was lower to the ground and smaller.

It consisted of a basket with a shell-like shape for children to sit in, affixed to large spoked wheels underneath. “The stroller” also had spring suspension for comfort.  At the time it was a trendy luxury item that only appeared in the wealthiest household, especially the royals. The invention became popular with upper-class families. 

horse carriage baby stroller

1800S: HANDLES AND FORWARD-FACING CARRIAGES

Almost a century after William Kent built the first unit. By the early 1840’s, the popularity of the baby carriage was in full swing. Even at that moment, “the stroller” device was less than entirely safe for use. No matter what, that did not stop high society from embracing it with open arms, and in droves.

Later a new design for baby carriage came out. The parent replaced the role of the animal in this design. There were handles on the carriage that allowed parents to pull a stroller behind them, with the baby facing forward making it easy for average families to use. Anyways it was easy for accidents to occur as most of them were tall and unstable.

Mother feeding her child in a forward facing stroller which is the first in stroller history

1848-CHARLES BURTON INVENTION

In 1848, American innovator Charles Burton was the one who changed the meaning of baby carriage. He placed handles on them so that they could be used by parents to push their children around instead of pulling them. Nevertheless, his new design was not welcomed in the United States at first. Therefore he took it to England and created a big fuss. There his version was welcomed by Queens of the time and they hired him. Burton then filed a patent for the Perambulator (also known as the Pram) in 1852.

In the year of mid-1800s, the carriage body was usually made of wicker with a metal frame. They used to never paint them. The wheels were made of original rubber on steel spokes. The carriage top was adjustable to flip forward or back to block sunlight as needed. Furthermore, the footrest was also adjustable to fit an infant to a toddler to a sitting or prone position. Usually, It used to measure 43” long from handle to end of the footrest. And was 40” tall x 22 ½” wide.

LATE 1800S: THE REVERSIBLE BABY CARRIAGE history

A new type of baby carriage arose again later that century, in 1889.  William H. Richardson created a more functional baby carriage and registered a patent for the reversible stroller. The firs reversible stroller in stroller history. This means that the bassinet could be positioned to face both out and in. Trying to modernize the carriage, Richardson made structural changes that allowed for the wheels to move separately. Until then carriages had axels connecting the wheels which prevented independent wheel movement. Richardson changes made the stroller more maneuverable and convenient for parents.

FIRST REVERSIBLE BABY CARRIAGE IN STROLLER HISTORY

1920S: SAFETY FEATURES FIRST

The 1900s baby strollers were mainly known as the “baby buggy.” Their usage became widespread among all economic classes in this era. This happened mainly because of the improvements that made them safer and the assumed benefits of providing light and fresh air to the child. Besides, charity organizations donated baby strollers to the mothers who needed them and couldn’t afford buying one. 

In the 1920’s, baby carriages were becoming somewhat of a norm to society

Following World War I, safety was also being implemented with brakes, stronger frames, and enlarged wheels. Baby carriages were being updated to also include other features that remain in today’s prams. For example: deeper and roomier prams (which made it harder for kids to escape), and lower, sturdier frames (so if little ones did manage to climb out, it wasn’t far to the ground). Prams became very popular in the 1920s owing to their larger wheels and the incorporation of a braking system. These tools were created to be deeper to prevent the baby from climbing out of the carriage. They also had sturdier, lighter, and, consequently, safer frames.

1930S TO 1950S: MASS-PRODUCED STROLLER history

It was during the 1930s onward that a lot of different companies began to mass-produce baby strollers. At that time, their production was made possible because rubber and plastic parts became more common in manufacturing. Inexpensive chrome which became widely available, replaced expensive brass parts.  Furthermore, Giussepe Perego popularized baby strollers. He did so when he founded the Peg Perego in 1949. Its design strollers use stretchy fabric instead of sheet metal and wicker. 

Lightweight, convertible, and luxury models of baby strollers entered the market in 1950

Baby strollers were a must-have for new parents in 1950. Made of cheap materials and safe designs they became not just fashionable but also budget-friendly. This happened especially after Queen Victoria purchased one for her sixth newborn child. A & F Saward and Silver Cross are some companies that started manufacturing custom-made prams in the 1950s. The British Royalty being one of the loyal customers.

1965: THE UMBRELLA STROLLER history

The Umbrella Stroller finally came out in 1965. It was created by the London Aeronautical Engineer Owen Maclaren. He constructed the first umbrella stroller in stroller history because his daughter complained to him. She told him how difficult it was to travel with her child and a pram. Maclaren’s understanding of airplanes helped him create the new model. 

His design was compact-friendly and lightweight, using an aluminum frame that could easily collapse and be stored. Over 1,000 of these durable, lightweight strollers had been produced and sold by the end of 1967. At this point, strollers using this design began being used all over the world. Does his name sound familiar? That’s because Maclaren strollers are still on the market today, and is still one of the top selling brand for strollers. 

MID 1980S: THE JOGGING STROLLER history

Kezo Kassai invented the first collapsible baby stroller in stroller history in 1980 which could also increase the size the length forward. The stroller’s handle could be pivoted to change the direction of the stroller. This would depend on the sitting position of the baby, either forward-facing position or back-facing position.

Later in 1981, Henry Fleisher would build the first baby stroller in stroller history that had a collapsible frame using slider slots and pins joint mechanism

The wheels were not rotatable and used a single axle to maintain the wheels in place. What’s more, in 1984, Phil Baechler who at that time was a new parent wanted to spend more time with his baby son. Baechler used to be a journalist for his local newspaper whose favorite hobby was running. He wanted to be able to take his son along with him when he went on runs. Because he knew the standard baby carriage wheels would take a beating on the dirt trails where he liked to run, he replaced them with bicycle tires. After a few tweaks to his design to make for a sturdier frame, the three-wheeled “baby jogger” was born. Since that time, now in the modern era, strollers are safer and more well constructed than ever before.

First jogging stroller in stroller history

1986: the double stroller history

 In 1986 was created the very first jogging stroller in stroller history for two children. It was developed by The stroller company Baby Jogger. They named the double stroller “The Twinner.” We now have strollers for three or even four babies. The idea originates from here. 

MODERN BABY STROLLER history

Today thanks to the latest inventions, parents can choose their preferred baby stroller. Their choice can depend on their budget, use, and aesthetic value. These strollers can be suitable for traveling, twin baby strollers, double baby strollers for your baby and toddler (such as Hop), and full-size strollers that are suitable for all terrains. You are also able to find a lot of lightweight baby strollers (such as Skip). 

SKIP is an umbrella stroller which makes travel (and storage) easy. What’s more, skip has high-function stroller systems which boast helpful features like extra storage and snap -on bassinets or car seats. Usually, this baby stroller can make all the difference for parents in how they go about daily activities with their baby.  It is not just used as a form of transportation, but as a way to keep their child close to them. 

With 6 1/2 inch wheels you will be able to conquer whatever terrain gets in your way. Quick, nimble and folds up in a flash to be stored in the trunk of your car or the tiniest of closets. Skip baby strollers are convenient for both newborn and older babies. While most umbrella strollers are designed for children 6 months and up Skip is suitable from 3+ months, or birth with a compatible infant car seat.

There are useful features of modern baby strollers which make the stroller a safe place for your little one. Here are most of them:

  • Either front or rear-facing seats

  • Folding mechanism 

    Modern baby strollers must have either one-hand fold, umbrella fold, or compact fold mechanisms.

  • Compatibility with travel systems

  • Height adjustable handle

  • Brake mechanism 

    Hand brakes are usually appropriate when it is impossible to press the brake lever by foot. The foot brakes are more convenient when a parent has his or her hand full.

  • Straps 

    It is important for modern baby strollers to have chest straps, waist straps, and crotch straps. They increase a baby’s safety.

  • Harnesses

    Modern baby strollers can have either a 5-point harness, 3-point harness, or 2-point harness. Usually, a five-point harness is the safest for smaller babies. On the other hand a 3-point harness is safest for babies who sit independently and toddlers. Lastly, a 2-point harness is safest for toddlers and older children.

  • Tires

    Instead of plastic tires, try to choose a baby stroller that has either air-filled or foam-filled tires. This will help you to give your baby or toddler the best quality ride. Foam-filled tires ensure minimal jerks and shocks, and cannot get punctured, unlike air-filled tires.

  • Wheels

    Furthermore, you need to choose a baby stroller that has large wheels and an excellent suspension. It will prevent your baby from getting rocked a lot if you plan to take your baby for walks.

Without a doubt, strollers make your everyday life as a parent easier. It’s a great way to add that extra bit of ease and convenience as you get used to being a new parent. I’m sure you can’t imagine having to carry your baby when running quick errands or trying to catch the bus?

It will help you save a great deal of time and add to not only your baby’s comfort but it will also be a great relief for you as well. Today, hundreds of stroller models are available, ranging from a $15 Umbrella stroller to a $3000 stroller with the latest technology. 

Which one will you choose from? 

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