Click on thumbnail to enlarge
Around 1840, Robert Napier (1791-1876) a Scottish marine engineer invented the vacuum coffee brewer, pictured above, but never patented it. This style of vacuum brewer, also called a "Napierian" remained popular for many years and in 1856 was presented an award by The Institution of Mechanical Engineers attesting to its popularity.
The Crown Derby pattern Napier shown above left was purchased from Michele Winfrey of "Marie Croft Antiques" in Burlingame CA. If you look at the bottom of this page you will see that this Napier sold for 52/6 in 1863, an enormous sum of money during this time.
The Napier vacuum brewer above right was purchased from a dealer in Canada. I don't believe that it was ever used. The alcohol lamp has never been lit. I was amazed when he said that he had the directions for this brewer. Below are the scans for this "Napierian" coffee brewer. Instructions digitally cleaned by Mathew Hargreaves.