Metric Conversion Card

In the 1970s, after metric units of measure had been adopted in Canada and Great Britain, some people in the United States advocated adoption of the metric system. The National Bureau of Standards of the U. S. Department of Commerce prepared this white plastic reference card to assist those wishing to use the unfamiliar units of measure. One side gave approximate conversion factors for computing metric measures from customary measures of length, area, mass and volume. This side also has a scale eight centimeters long divided to millimeters, and a chart with temperatures in degrees Fahrenheit along the top and temperatures in degrees centigrade along the bottom.
The other side of the card gives factors for converting from metric to common measures of length, area, mass, volume, and temperature. There also is a scale three inches long divided to 1/16th of an inch.
The card was a gift of machinist George A. Norton, a longtime employee of the National Museum of American History.
Currently not on view
Object Name
mathematical table
date made
U.S. Department of Commerce, National Bureau of Standards
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
overall: .1 cm x 6.2 cm x 9.2 cm; 1/32 in x 2 7/16 in x 3 5/8 in
place made
United States: District of Columbia, Washington
ID Number
catalog number
nonaccession number
Science & Mathematics
Mathematical Charts and Tables
Measuring & Mapping
Metric System
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Metric System
Mathematical Charts and Tables
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of George A. Norton III
Additional Media

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