Science & Mathematics
The Museum's collections hold thousands of objects related to chemistry, biology, physics, astronomy, and other sciences. Instruments range from early American telescopes to lasers. Rare glassware and other artifacts from the laboratory of Joseph Priestley, the discoverer of oxygen, are among the scientific treasures here. A Gilbert chemistry set of about 1937 and other objects testify to the pleasures of amateur science. Artifacts also help illuminate the social and political history of biology and the roles of women and minorities in science.
The mathematics collection holds artifacts from slide rules and flash cards to code-breaking equipment. More than 1,000 models demonstrate some of the problems and principles of mathematics, and 80 abstract paintings by illustrator and cartoonist Crockett Johnson show his visual interpretations of mathematical theorems.
"Science & Mathematics - Overview" showing 1 items.
- This abacus fits in a black wooden box with a wooden cross piece. Eleven parallel bamboo rods carry seven beads each. Two beads are above the cross piece, five below. The beads are rounded, like those on Chinese abaci. One rod is broken and another cracked. The abacus was received as a gift from the Department of Mathematics of Brown University in 1973. There are no marks by a maker.
- Currently not on view
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- National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center