Glass Bottle with Sand


By the 1840s, it was well known that there were at least three kinds of sand on Long Island—silicaceous, iron and garnet—mixed together in variable proportions. This glass jar with cork stopper, containing a dark powdery substance, came from the shop of Henry Fitz (1808-1863), America’s first successful commercial telescope maker. The pencil inscription on the faded paper label reads: "Iron & Garnet Sand; L. I. Beach Peconic; L. I.: To get the garnets, spread a sheet of paper and slide a magnet under it."

Location: Currently not on view

Referenced: United States: New York, Peconic

See more items in: Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Willard H. Howell

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: PH.315158.075Accession Number: 215541Catalog Number: 315158.075

Object Name: bottle with powder

Physical Description: glass (overall material)garnet sand (inside material)cork (stopper material)Measurements: overall: 17 cm x 3.5 cm; 6 11/16 in x 1 3/8 inoverall: 7 in x 3 in x 1 in; 17.78 cm x 7.62 cm x 2.54 cm


Record Id: nmah_1350017

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.