Model of a Grassmann Current Element by Richard P. Baker, Baker #293

Model of a Grassmann Current Element by Richard P. Baker, Baker #293

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The nineteenth century saw a remarkable expansion of knowledge of electricity, including study of the magnetism associated with wires carrying electrical currents. One who wrote on the subject was the German teacher Hermann Grassmann (1809-1877). This is a representation of a current element after the ideas of Grassmann. The model is part of a collection of surfaces prepared by Richard P. Baker, a mathematician at the University of Iowa.
This particular example of the model was on loan from Baker for exhibition at MIT from 1939 until the mid-1950s. It, along with the other models in accession 211257, came to the Smithsonian from MIT in 1956.
Grassmann, H., “Neue Theorie der Electrodynamik,” Annalen der Physik und Chemie, 1845, vol. 140, pp. 1-18.
Baker, R.P., Mathematical Models, Iowa City, 1931, p. 18.
Currently not on view
Object Name
geometric model
date made
ca 1906-1935
Baker, Richard P.
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
red (overall color)
black (overall color)
soldered (overall production method/technique)
average spatial:.1 cm x 15.6 cm x 15.6 cm; 1/32 in x 6 5/32 in x 6 5/32 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Frances E. Baker
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Science & Mathematics
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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