Hamilton Lanphere Smith (1819-1903) was a graduate of Yale College who taught natural philosophy and astronomy at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, from 1853 to 1868, and then moved to Hobart College in Geneva, N.Y. An avid microscopist, he obtained a patent for an “Improvement in Microscopes” in 1866. This invention, he claimed “consists in the use of a movable reflector inserted into the tube of a microscope and arranged so as to transmit the light down through the lens on the object in such a manner that by the action of said lens or object glass of the microscope the light is condensed on the object to be viewed, and an object viewed as opaque will be illuminated for the microscope.” This is the model that Smith submitted with his patent application.
Ref: Hamilton L. Smith, “Microscope,” U.S. Patent 52901 (1866).
Currently not on view
Object Name
microscope, patent model
date made
overall, as stored with tag: 2 5/8 in x 2 3/4 in x 3 1/4 in; 6.6675 cm x 6.985 cm x 8.255 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
patent number
Science & Scientific Instruments
Science & Mathematics
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
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