Original Author : Murlach / Date : 2005-06-12 00:37

The parent of the Violet Wand was called a ‘Violet Ray’.

In the late 1800s with the spread of the use of electricity and the proliferation of inventors, electricity was touted as a means to cure many physical and mental ailments. Respected medical science developed electricity therapies in the treatment of many diseases, including in mental institutions. It became common for many individual households to have an electrical shock box as part of their inventory. These were lovely well-made wooden boxes that contained galvanic shock apparatus powered by the newly invented dry cell battery. Many of these old electrical shock treatment devices can be found in antiques stores, museums, and among quack medical collections today.

Nikola Tesla was one of the pioneering inventors of the century, (though largely unheard of today) and among his inventions was what was known as the Tesla coil, a coil that disrupted electrical flow and transformed it. (You can consider Nikola Tesla’s ‘tesla coil’ as the grandparent of the violet wand.) Combined with the electric shock medical box apparatuses in use at the time, his coil was employed in subsequent devices. This next generation of electric therapy devices diffused the electric shock into charges of strong DC electricity. When the electrical charge travelled through gas-filled glass tubes, it excited the gas and caused it to glow. It was purported at the time that the smaller particles would be absorbed more readily by the body than it had with the old drycell shock boxes.

The violet ray medical therapy devices became very popular as a cure-all, especially during the 1920’s and 30’s, when health became a greater concern among the population. There were at-home kits with very basic attachments, and Doctors-only kits with a multitude of attachments meant for insertion into bodily orifices. Some manufacturers of early wands went out of business during the depression, and wands by these manufacturers are highly sought by collectors. World War II also had an effect on the violet wands as metal parts were needed by the war effort and wood went into building. Boxes for devices made during this period of wartime shortages are usually made of heavy cardboard. New technology made further improvements to wands manufactured during this time. However, their success was fleeting and consumers stopped buying them when the promised medical cures never came and all they got was shocked by sparks. Because the devices were thought to improve circulation, they found their way into beauty salons for scalp and facial treatments too after they were discarded by the medical community for having only limited medical uses.

In 1951, a libel suit was filed against the Master Electrical Company (nearly the last manufacturer of violet wand medical devices left in existence) for misbranding its devices as medical cures for various diseases. The court ordered that the devices be turned over to the Food and Drug Administration as contraband. Foreign companies were able to circumvent the ruling and continued to manufacture violet ray kits with many strange attachments.

Edgar Cayce was a proponent of the wand for metaphysical uses and they experienced a resurgence during the earthy 60’s and 70’s, especially as they do emit ozone and small amounts of UV which kills bacteria. But while some were consigned to attics or sold in flea markets as curiosities, most were disposed of entirely. The old brochures and pamplets are full of misinformation and outrageous claims for the treatment of disease and are also highly collectible.

Violet ray parents had two children: Violet wands (the black sheep of the family) and High Frequency Beauty devices

The old (strong) violet ray devices were no longer being manufactured due to the 1954 lawsuit settlement. However, the technology was adapted for use in High Frequency devices which were meant for cosmetic use. These operate on the same technology, but do not have anywhere near the output of the original violet ray medical therapy devices.

It really wasn’t until the 1980s that the old violet ray devices began to be discovered on a larger scale by the kinky set, and old kits began to be pulled out of attics and basements. (This was before many of the safety factors were known!) No new devices were being made, aside from the weak high frequency cosmetic devices, which were too weak to ‘have fun’ with. To meet the demand of the kinky folk, Donnie Rice (of Erotec) began specifically marketing a violet wand device for the kinky set. It would have the strength of output that the old violet ray devices had, but it would also have new features that they did not have, that were now desired by kinky users… such as safety features and length of run time.

Donnie Rice passed away, but we remember his legacy as being the first to manufacture “violet wands.” He is commemmorated in the Violet Wand Guild crest for his importance in the development of today’s violet wand. His distinctive red-bodied violet wands were the first to employ a ceramic capacitor to increase play time. His contributions made a significant impact on the ‘Big Three’ violet wand parent companies that produce violet wands today.

Interestingly, violet ray devices are experiencing a resurgence in alternative medicine therapies. For example, currently you may find dermatologists using devices based on the same technology, in the treatment of acne and in stimulation of the scalp for hair loss. But, as stated, in modern times, the technologies of violet wands (specifically for kinky or erotic uses) and high frequency (specifically for cosmetological purpposes) have diverged. High Frequency devices used by aestheticians today, do not have near the output levels of violetwands as they have evolved, and a BDSM-user would not be happy with a ‘high-frequency’ device. Conversely, a person in a beauty parlor would run screaming if they were faced with the full power of a potent BDSM violet wand! Neither group could use the other’s tool to good effect.

Thus, from Tesla coil and medical shock box grandparents, the violet ray parent birthed one meek child: the soft, angelic ‘High Frequency’ beauty device… and one ‘demon’ spawn….. The Violet Wand.

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