Energy & Power
The Museum's collections on energy and power illuminate the role of fire, steam, wind, water, electricity, and the atom in the nation's history. The artifacts include wood-burning stoves, water turbines, and windmills, as well as steam, gas, and diesel engines. Oil-exploration and coal-mining equipment form part of these collections, along with a computer that controlled a power plant and even bubble chambers—a tool of physicists to study protons, electrons, and other charged particles.
A special strength of the collections lies in objects related to the history of electrical power, including generators, batteries, cables, transformers, and early photovoltaic cells. A group of Thomas Edison's earliest light bulbs are a precious treasure. Hundreds of other objects represent the innumerable uses of electricity, from streetlights and railway signals to microwave ovens and satellite equipment.
- These hand tools were found in the engine and boiler space belowdecks in Indiana’s hold, indicating that they were used for the machinery. The crew used the shovel to add coal to the fires.
- The hand truck—virtually identical to modern examples—is one of four found aboard Indiana and used for moving cargo into, out of, and around the cargo hold of the ship. This hand truck was the artifact that actually identified the vessel when it was located in 1972, for the words “PROPR INDIANA” were stamped into its handle. The other three had different ships’ names stamped on them, indicating that they were secondhand or borrowed equipment.
- Date made
- ca 1858
- when the Indiana was found
- ID Number
- catalog number
- accession number
- Data Source
- National Museum of American History