Pocket Compass

Pocket Compass

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This pocket compass belonged to Spencer Fullerton Baird, the naturalist who served as the second Secretary of the Smithsonian. The inscription on the back reads “PATENTED MAY 6. 1862 / H. W. HUNTER / NEW YORK.” Hugh W. Hunter was in business by the mid-1850s, advertising as an optician, manufacturer, and importer of optical and mathematical instruments.
Ref: H. W. Hunter, “Improvement in Magnetic Compasses,” U.S. Patent 35,156 (May 6, 1862).
Currently not on view
Object Name
Pocket Compass
Hunter, Hugh W.
place made
United States: New York, New York
overall: 9/16 in x 1 5/8 in x 2 3/8 in; 1.42875 cm x 4.1275 cm x 6.0325 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
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Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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