Our museum is temporarily closed to support the effort to contain the spread of COVID-19. Read a message from our director, and check our website and social media for updates.

Book, Elements of Descriptive Geometry

Book, Elements of Descriptive Geometry

Usage conditions apply
This reprint copy covers one of the core subjects in the U.S. Military Academy's mathematics curriculum. Descriptive geometry consists of techniques for projecting three-dimensional objects into two-dimensional representations. Claude Crozet introduced the descriptive geometry he learned in France to West Point in the late 1810s; the subject was used to train cadets in engineering drawing. Church's textbook replaced Davies's Elements of Descriptive Geometry and was taught in the Academy from 1864 to 1929. This copy is marked with carets on pages 1 to 66 and 168 to 172 to denote the sections covered in each class meeting. The reader also finds "Monday October 9" written on page 16, a penciled correction on page 19, and a Western Union order form and French homework exercises between pages 20 and 21. The copy is otherwise clean.
References: www.dean.usma.edu/math/about/history/church.htm [accessed 9 August 2001].
Joe Albree, David C. Arney, and V. Frederick Rickey, A Station Favorable to the Pursuits of Science: Primary Materials in the History of Mathematics at the United States Military Academy (American Mathematical Society, 2000), pp. 16, 74-79.
John Howard Brown, ed., Cyclopaedia of American Biographies, vol. 2 (Boston, 1900), p. 1.
George W. Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U. S. Military Academy, vol. 1 (Boston and New York, 1891), pp. 404-405.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Church, Albert E.
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
overall: 1.7 cm x 15.8 cm x 22.2 cm; 21/32 in x 6 7/32 in x 8 3/4 in
ID Number
catalog number
nonaccession number
Credit Line
Gift of Mrs. C. B. Schmeltzer in Memory of C. B. Schmeltzer
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

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.


Add a comment about this object