This is a “Binocular Popular Microscope” with inter-ocular adjustment, coarse and fine focus, mechanical stage, trunnion, sub-stage mirror on a Lister limb, adjustable triangular base, and wooden box with extra objectives. The form was advertised as a Third-Class instrument that cost between $82.50 and $137.50, depending on accessories.
This example belonged to Greene Vardiman Black (1836-1915), an American dental pioneer. The inscription on the base reads “R. & J. BECK / LONDON / 5949.” The serial number indicates a date in the late 1860s.
Ref: Richard Beck, Achromatic Microscopes (London, 1865), pp. 73-88.
James W. Queen & Co., Priced and Illustrated Catalogue of Optical Instruments (Philadelphia and New York, 1874), pp. 110-111.
Currently not on view
Object Name
microscope, binocular
date made
late 1860s
R. & J. Beck
Physical Description
glass (microscope material)
metal (case material)
wood (case material)
brass (microscope material)
case: 17.3 cm x 40 cm x 15.5 cm; 6 13/16 in x 15 3/4 in x 6 1/8 in
microscope: 36.5 cm x 12.7 cm x 18.5 cm; 14 3/8 in x 5 in x 7 5/16 in
place made
United Kingdom: England, London
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Science & Mathematics
Science & Scientific Instruments
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
grandchildren of G. V. Black
Additional Media

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