Fraunhofer Telescope

This telescope has an achromatic objective, a four-element erecting eye piece, and a three-draw brass body covered with wood. It was made between 1819 and 1826. The telescope bears the engraving "Fraunhofer in München."
Joseph Fraunhofer (1787-1826) was a highly skilled optical craftsman and scientist who was closely involved with the origins of precision instrument making in Bavaria. In 1806 he joined the Mathematical Mechanical Institute in Munich run by Utzschneider, Reichenbach and Liebherr. In 1809, together with Utzschneider and Reichenbach, he established an Optical Institute in the nearby village of Benedictbeuern. Fraunhofer became head of the the Optical Institute in 1814, and moved it to Munich in 1819. After Fraunhofer’s death, the Optical Institute was managed by Merz and Mahler.
Ref: Myles Jackson, Spectrum of Belief; Joseph von Fraunhofer and the Craft of Precision Optics (Cambridge, Mass, 2000).
Currently not on view
Object Name
Fraunhofer, Joseph
overall: 10 3/4 in x 1 3/4 in; 27.305 cm x 4.445 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Measuring & Mapping
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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