Prior to the use of glass in lanterns, bovine horns could be used instead. By treating the horns, and stretching them they could be utilised to produce a transparent material that had the same effect as glass. Cow horn grows in layers, which makes it easier to separate, iron and then stretch to make the useful, translucent material.
This example of a horn lantern obtained by the Cater Museum was used on Sudbury Farm in Little Burstead. It was owned by the Daniels family who worked on the farm and who passed it down to Tom Carpenter of the Forge, in Little Burstead, who donated it to the museum.
Thomas Daniels was a champion ploughman in Billericay in 1903 and both he and his wife lived in the town until 1924. Their daughter Elizabeth married James Carpenter, a blacksmith in Little Burstead.
On Sudbury Farm the Daniels lived in the farmhouse that is situated on the grounds. The Grade II listed property dates from the 16th century and original features are still visible despite alterations in the 18th century and renovations in the 20th century.