Keuffel & Esser Geologist's Compass

This is an aluminum compass with brass sights that was designed for topographical work. The raised rim and beveled outer ring are graduated every degree and numbered every 10 degrees in quadrants from north and south. The northeast quadrant of the face has a variation scale that extends 27 degrees one way and 43 degrees the other; this is graduated to degrees, and reads by folded vernier to 5 minutes. The southern half of the face is graduated to degrees, and equipped with a pendulum clinometer pivoted at the center. There are level vials on the SE and SW corners of the plate. The four beveled edges of the plate are graduated, one to inches and tenths, one to inches and eighths, and two as protractors. The back of the plate has a diagram showing the arrangement of township numbering. The signature reads "KEUFFEL & ESSER CO NEW YORK." Other marks read "U.S. INDIAN FOREST SERVICE. DEPT OF THE INTERIOR" and "1958." New, with ball joint and socket for mounting on a jacob staff, this compass cost $25. The University of Missouri at Columbia donated it to the Smithsonian.
Ref: Keuffel & Esser, Catalogue (New York, 1913), p. 420.
Currently not on view
Object Name
compass (pocket, geologist's)
Keuffel & Esser Co.
overall: 4 in x 4 in; 10.16 cm x 10.16 cm
place made
United States: New York, New York
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Measuring & Mapping
Surveying and Geodesy
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center


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