J. T. Campbell Adding Machine


This U.S. Patent Office model for a finger-operated adding machine has four metal wheels set flat into a wooden case with a metal top (the fifth wheel is missing). Around the top edge of each wheel are ten short pins labeled clockwise from 0 to 9. Above each wheel is a round opening in the case. The edge of this opening is also labeled clockwise from 0 to 9. The mechanism linking the wheels is out of order. The patent tag is tied to the machine. It reads: 24.990 (/) J.T. Campbell (/) Adding Mch. (/) Patented August 9, (/) 1859.

John T. Campbell also took out patents for an "Improvement in Portable Fence," U.S. Patent 63,853, April 16, 1867; an “Improvement in Lifting-Tongs,” U.S. Patent 130,194, May 1, 1877; and a 'Revolving Cultivator," U.S. Patent 329137, October 27, 1885.

According to U.S. Census records and a biographical account, Campbell was born in 1833. Raised near a saw mill in Parke County, Indiana, he worked variously as a carpenter, a surveyor and engineer, and a hotelkeeper. During the Civil War, he organized an infantry regiment to fight for the Northern cause. Captain Campbell was disabled by a war wound. On his return, he obtained various local and state offices. By 1880 he had moved to Indianapolis, where he worked briefly as a clerk in the Indiana State Bureau of Statistics. He then retired to Parke County.


U.S. Patent 24990, August 9, 1859.

A. T. Andreas, Atlas Map of Parke County, Indiana, Chicago, Illinois: by the author, 1874, p. 29.

Date Made: 1859

Patentee: Campbell, J. T.Maker: Campbell, J. T.

Location: Currently not on view

Place Made: United States: Indiana, RockvillePlace Patented: United States: Indiana, Rockville

Subject: Mathematics


See more items in: Medicine and Science: Mathematics, Adding Machines, Science & Mathematics


Exhibition Location:

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: 1987.0107.01Catalog Number: 1987.0107.01Accession Number: 1987.0107

Object Name: adding machineObject Type: Patent Model

Physical Description: metal (overall material)wood (overall material)paper (overall material)Measurements: overall: 3 cm x 26.2 cm x 10.5 cm; 1 3/16 in x 10 5/16 in x 4 1/8 in

Guid: http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a5-0fa0-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa

Record Id: nmah_690697

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