Schoenner Flat Case of Drawing Instruments

This wooden case is covered with black leather and lined with blue satin and velvet. It has a steel locking pin. The case contains:
1) 4-3/4" German silver and steel drop spring bow pen marked: E. O. RICHTER & Co (/) GERMANY. The firm's trademark with superimposed backwards E, R, and O is next to the mark.
2) 6-1/8" German silver drawing compass with bendable legs and removable needle point (the needle is missing), extension bar, and pen point. On one side, the center joint is marked: D.R.P. The other side has the Schoenner trademark of a circle superimposed on two intersecting, two-headed arrows. Inside one leg is marked: SCHOENNER, GERMANY.
3) 5-3/4" German silver and steel fixed-point dividers. On one side, the center joint is marked: D.R.P. The other side has the Schoenner trademark. Inside one leg is marked: SCHOENNER, GERMANY.
4) 4-3/4" German silver and steel dividers with removable divider points, pen point, and pencil point. On one side, the center joint is marked: D.R.P. The other side has the Schoenner trademark. Inside one leg is marked: SCHOENNER. Inside the other leg is marked: 14.
5) 3-1/2" German silver and steel bow dividers.
6) 5-1/8" ivory and steel railroad pen with tightening screws in both blades and the central shank. The handle is marked: KEUFFEL & ESSER Co. N.Y. (/) GERMANY.
7) 5-1/8" ivory, German silver, and steel drawing pen marked: PARAGON. It is also marked: GERMANY. Paragon was a brand of Keuffel & Esser.
8) 4-3/8" ebony, German silver, and steel drawing pen marked: POSTS (/) GERMANY.
The Schoenner instruments and bow dividers fit properly in their slots and thus are likely original to the set. Slots in the case suggest that a bow pen and pencil, case for pencil leads, joint tightener, small pen point, and proportional compass were part of the original set. For Schoenner company history, see 1989.0305.05.
Chauncey Brockway Schmeltzer (1894–1974) owned this set of drawing instruments. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees in civil engineering from the University of Illinois in 1919 and 1920, and taught there until 1926. He also worked in private practice in Urbana, Ill., from 1921 to 1933. He then became an associate engineer appraiser for the Federal Land Bank of St. Louis until 1936. From 1936, he held the same title at the USDA's Bureau of Agricultural Engineering.
Reference: Winfield Scott Downs, ed., Who's Who in Engineering, 4th ed. (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1937), 1217.
Currently not on view
Currently not on view
Object Name
drawing instruments, set of
date made
ca 1930
Schoenner, Georg
Physical Description
velvet (case lining material)
wood (case material)
leather (case cover material)
satin (case lining material)
german silver (instruments material)
steel (instruments material)
ivory (handles material)
overall: 2.5 cm x 23 cm x 14.5 cm; 31/32 in x 9 1/16 in x 5 23/32 in
place made
Deutschland: Bayern, Nuremberg
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Science & Mathematics
Drafting, Engineering
Drawing Instruments
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Drawing Instruments
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Grace Pauline Schmeltzer
Additional Media

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