group of seven exceptionally rare joseph f. l. uhl-designed chairs patented in 1902 (considered a precursor to the slightly modified "perfection" chair) and manufactured by the uhl brothers company, toledo, oh. these early prototypes were advertised as a new and useful improvements in the construction of metal furniture (at the time, twisted metal furniture was mostly predominant during the late 19th century). in addition to the introduction of lightweight and rigid steel for use in this type of newly created furniture, the patented chairs were heavily promoted as being highly desirable from a sanitary standpoint because it was easily kept clean and when in use for an extended period of time, the chairs could be readily taken apart and refinished time and again without compromising the chair's structural integrity. unlike the "uhl art steel" furniture fabricated from 1904 and beyond, these remarkably early examples contain a multitude of pressed and formed u-shaped cross-sections (used to reinforce the chair legs and chair back) that are fastened together with standard machine screws as opposed to the riveted joints seen in later models manufactured by the toledo metal furniture company. in addition, the curvaceous leg "standards" are secured to circular-shaped cast iron plates that are mounted flush against the underside of the solid wood seats (now covered). the backrests, which consist of metal strips folded over and molded into the recognizable "heart shape" profile seen in the "perfection" ice cream parlor chair, remains in great overall condition. the thee strips of steel pinched together in the center and flaring above and below, form the splats (which are individually screwed to the underside of the seats. the cabriole style legs remain structurally sound and stable. the distinctive and much-needed inner brace or "spider" was not yet incorporated into this early design the underside retains the original stenciled stamp (others have a brass plaque with lightly incised manufacturer markings). two years later, a modified version, known as the "perfection" chair would be mass-produced and widely distributed under the newly incorporated toledo metal furniture company located in toledo, ohio. priced for the lot.