- William Austin Burt submitted this model of his new equatorial sextant to the U.S. Patent Office in 1856. According to the published patent (#16,002), this instrument could be used to take azimuths, altitude, and time with one observation, and thus enable one to easily obtain the position and bearing of a ship at sea. This instrument was ingenious, but never found much of a market. Burt is better remembered for the solar compass that he introduced in the 1830s.
- Ref: John S. Burt, They Left Their Mark. A Biography of William Austin Burt (Rancho Cordova, Ca., 1985), pp. 128-130.
- Currently not on view
- Object Name
- equatorial sextant
- Object Type
- Patent Model
- date made
- Burt, William A.
- overall: 11 7/8 in x 10 1/4 in x 5 5/8 in; 30.1625 cm x 26.035 cm x 14.2875 cm
- overall: 12 in x 11 in x 5 in; 30.48 cm x 27.94 cm x 12.7 cm
- ID Number
- catalog number
- accession number
- patent number
- See more items in
- Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
- Measuring & Mapping
- Science & Mathematics
- Patent Models
- Invention and the Patent Model
- Data Source
- National Museum of American History
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.