ERJ Archives: From the 9 June, 1890 edition of the magazine:
The all new patented Lawn Tennis Ball Renovator was launched in the market in 1890, by A&B Ramsden of Leeds, UK.
Introduced at a price of just over £2, the device was claimed to be "the most successful ball cleaning machine ever introduced."
Its performance was said to be due in part to a special cleaning solvent which prevented the tennis balls from "slackening".
Sports goods, particularly tennis equipment, provided a key market for rubber materials in the 1890 - before the advent of the tire industry.