Microscope

Description
After a fire destroyed his shop at Canastota, N.Y., Charles A. Spencer moved to Geneva, N.Y., and made microscopes for the Geneva Optical Company. This example inscribed “C. A. SPENCER & SONS / FOR GENEVA OPT. CO. / NO. 32” is a compound monocular with rack-and-pinion focus, circular rotating stage, inclination joint, sub-stage mirror on Lister limb, and tri-leg base. The lenses have been lost.
Marshall Ewell, a Chicago lawyer and microscopist, informed the Smithsonian in 1909 that he had seen this microscope in the hands of Herbert R. Spencer. He also said that, after Spencer’s death, his widow had sent it to him with the request that, in time, he would forward it to the Smithsonian.
Ref: Oscar W. Richards, “Charles A. Spencer and His Microscopes,” Rittenhouse 2 (May 1888): 70-81.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
microscope
date made
1873-1880
maker
Geneva Optical Company
C. A. Spencer & Sons
Physical Description
brass (overall material)
black (overall color)
Measurements
average spatial: 39 cm x 13.5 cm x 18 cm; 15 3/8 in x 5 5/16 in x 7 1/16 in
place made
United States: New York, Geneva
associated place
United States: Illinois, Chicago
ID Number
MG*M-09774
accession number
50311
catalog number
M-09774
subject
Science & Scientific Instruments
Microscopes
Science & Mathematics
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Microscopes
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Marshall Ewell

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