Schoenner Set of Drawing Instruments Sold by E. L. Washburn & Co.

Description
This wooden case is covered with black leather and lined with blue satin and velvet. The case has a steel locking pin. The bottom of the case has a red and white sticker marked: PRE-1960 (/) PROPERTY OF (/) Edward A. Chapin. (/) SMITHSONIAN (/) ENTOMOLOGY. The inside of the lid is marked: E. L. Washburn & Co (/) New Haven, Conn. The set includes:
1) 6" German silver compass with bendable legs and removable pencil point, pen point, and lengthening bar. On one side, the joint is marked: D.R.P. On the other side, the joint has the Schoenner logo: an S, a G, and two intersecting arrows with two heads superimposed on each other. Inside one leg is marked: SCHOENNER GERMANY.
2) 5-3/4" German silver fixed-leg dividers. On one side, the joint is marked: D.R.P. On the other side, the joint has the Schoenner logo: an S, G, and two intersecting arrows with two heads superimposed on each other. Inside one leg is marked: SCHOENNER GERMANY.
3) 3-3/8" German silver bow dividers, bow pen, and bow pencil.
4) 4" and 5-1/8" ebony, German silver, and steel drawing pens.
5) 1-1/4" cylindrical metal case with four pencil leads. Two additional leads and a 1/2" round brass weight are loose in the case.
6) 1" metal joint tightener.
Besides the extra leads and weight, the set appears to be intact. For other sets manufactured in part or whole by Schoenner, a German firm that operated between 1851 and World War II, see 1977.0279.01, 1977.1101.0097, 1979.0868.01, 1989.0305.05, 1990.0350.01, and MA*317925.04. E. L. Washburn, a medical doctor, began to make and sell surgical instruments and supplies in New Haven, Conn., in 1866. He had partners until 1876, when he became sole proprietor and named the business after himself. By 1899, he also sold mathematical instruments. The firm was still operating in 1938.
Edward Albert Chapin (1894–1969), curator of entomology at the National Museum of Natural History, owned these instruments. He completed undergraduate work at Yale in 1916 and then moved away from Connecticut, so it is likely he purchased the instruments during his studies. He worked for the Smithsonian from 1934 to 1954 and left the set behind when he retired. U.S. Department of Agriculture scientist Richard White may then have used the instruments.
References: Leading Business Men of New Haven County (Boston: Mercantile Publishing Company, 1887), 134; New Haven Directory (New Haven: Price & Lee Co., 1899), 734; Smithsonian Institution Archives Acc. 11-085, "Chapin, Edward Albert 1894–, Edward Albert Chapin Field Notebooks, 1937–1947," http://siarchives.si.edu/collections/siris_arc_298428; accession file.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
drawing instruments, set of
date made
ca 1915
distributor
E. L. Washburn & Co.
maker
Schoenner, Georg
Physical Description
german silver (overall material)
leather (overall material)
wood (overall material)
cloth (overall material)
steel (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 1.8 cm x 22 cm x 10.8 cm; 23/32 in x 8 21/32 in x 4 1/4 in
place made
Germany
place distributed
United States: Connecticut, New Haven
ID Number
1996.0295.01
catalog number
1996.0295.01
accession number
1996.0295
subject
Science & Mathematics
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 Elaine R. S. Hodges
Additional Media

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