In the event of a government shutdown, American History will remain OPEN through at least Saturday, October 7, by using prior year funds. Visit for updates.

Model Relating to Powers Tabulating Equipment

Model Relating to Powers Tabulating Equipment

<< >>
Usage conditions apply
The wooden base of this model holds a metal container with a paper punch card that fits in it. A metal piece swings from a crosspiece above the card. The base also holds supports for another metal crosspiece. Three metal pieces rotate with this crosspiece. The base also holds two larger, facing metal rectangles. One rectangle has a plastic piece screwed to the top.
A mark on the right side of the punch card reads: POWERS ACCOUNTING MACHINE COMPANY (/) ACCOUNTS PAYABLE. A mark on the left side of the punch card reads: P1384. The punched holes are round.
A piece of paper pasted to the top of the base reads: This model represents my new (/) invention of a tabulator in connec- (/) tion with perforated cards, elimina- (/) ting a pin box of 540 pins and sub- (/) stitution forty-five levers instead. (/) Also eliminating connection box, with (/) both of these improvements the speed (/) will be doubled and such machine will (/) be small in size, cheaper to build, (/) more flexible and easier to manipulate. (/) August 19, 1924 (/) James Powers. Also signing the document were Fred J. Dole, Charles E. Whiteman and Achilles Rovegno, all of whom had associations with Francis H. Richards of New York, Powers’s patent attorney.
No patent corresponding to this invention has been found.
Currently not on view
Object Name
tabulating equipment model
date made
James Powers
place made
United States: New York, New York City
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
wood (overall material)
metal (overall material)
overall: 13 cm x 22.9 cm x 21.6 cm; 5 1/8 in x 9 1/32 in x 8 1/2 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Thor Dockweiler
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Computers & Business Machines
Tabulating Equipment
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.

Note: Comment submission is temporarily unavailable while we make improvements to the site. We apologize for the interruption. If you have a question relating to the museum's collections, please first check our Collections FAQ. If you require a personal response, please use our Contact page.