Adams & Westlake, also known as A&W or Adlake, became a dominant maker of short-globe lanterns and their #200, #250, and plain “Kero” (sometimes known as #300 or #400) models were sold by the thousands to the entire range of railroads. Short-globe lanterns came about because manufacturers figured out how to get a lantern to burn properly with a shorter combustion chamber, which allowed lanterns to be shorter and cheaper. Adams & Westlake began selling #200 Kero lanterns around 1921 and they sold well, the #250 Kero lantern was released in the mid 1920’s as an improvement over the #200 version, with a new burner design. FInally, around 1930 Adams & Westlake released models marked simply “Kero” but are sometimes known as the #300 or #400 models, which are further refinements. The #200, #250, and “Kero” models all look very similar in design and in fact they are all pretty much the same frame design with a couple of minor differences on the later “Kero” models.
Short globe lanterns are still very easy to find because they were produced well into the mid 1900s. Adams & Westlake short globe lanterns can usually be dated by looking for a two-part date code on the bottom of the lantern. The first digit will be 1,2,3, or 4 followed by a dash and then a two digit number. Sample code: 2-39 would mean that the lantern was produced in the 2nd quarter (Apr-Jun) of 1939.
Adams and Westlake short globe lanterns will have globes 3-1/4″ tall. Value of short globe lanterns will be less than their older tall-globe cousins, but they can still be valuable, especially to new lantern collectors, with rare railroad markings, and unique globes. As always a lantern needs to be in good condition to bring the best prices, and should have all its original parts. Additionally, it is important not to clean the lantern excessively as collectors often put a high value on a natural patina. Short globe Adams & Westlake #200, #250, or “Kero” models tend to sell in the $40-80 range with exceptional lantern, railroad, and globe combinations or oddities selling for $200-300.