West Sea Company

21. Telescopes & Optics

Prices in U.S. Dollars are in GREEN

 



5.45/21.19   WORLD WAR  II  U.S. NAVY PERISCOPE.  A truly amazing find!  This is a World War II vintage turret gunsight telescopic periscope from a capital battleship of the era!  The telescope body is steel with brass components.   Its state-of-the-art optics produce a highly magnified upright image crucial to the big ship’s mission.  The ocular is a typical cylindrical eyepiece with rotating focus.  The original fitted rubber eye cup is still present and quite flexible.  The internal optics also produce both a reticle for tracking the target and a built-in degree scale.  The optics work just as a submarine periscope providing a horizontal image in-line with the target over a vertical distance of more than 3 feet.  The maker’s inscription on the side of the main body reads:

“U.S. NAVY BUR. OF ORD.
PERISCOPE MK 23
INSP’R  B.B.A. No. 26
U.S. NAVAL GUN FACTORY
WASHINGTON D.C.  1942”

 This periscope measures 42 inches tall overall and 10 inches in diameter at the widest.   What is especially nice is the periscope is contained in its original dovetailed oak carrying box (crate) measuring 4 feet long and 13/2 inches wide.   The entire assembly weighs 192 pounds.  There are substantial fold-down handles for carrying on each end.  What a rare and unusual offering!  949 

We have seen a similar telescope mounted through the roof of a Cape Cod home allowing the owners to take in the surrounding scenery from the comfort and privacy of their living room!

 

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21.17  18th CENTURY TELESCOPE.  Extra nice, highly sought after late 18th century English telescope by the noted makers “Spencer, Browning & Rust LONDON,” as beautifully hand-engraved on the eyepiece barrel.  This 2-draw hand-held telescope has a lovely solid cherry wood main barrel which is in exceptional original condition.  The objective lens is contained in its typical early style cast brass housing with scalloped form and scribed line decorations.  Telling of its age it has a sliding horizontal dust cover with spring stiffener.  The ocular end is also of the late 18th century form with plain eyepiece and concealed horizontal dust slide.  Together with the achromatic lens (recently invented by Dollond in 1751) and its erecting system consisting of 4 internal lenses, this handsome little telescope provides a clear, undistorted, upright image of surprising magnification and clarity!  8 inches closed and 18 inches long fully extended.  The barrels expand and compress effortlessly and the dust slides move smoothly, as designed.  It seems hard to believe that instrument has survived in such pristine condition for over 220 years!  Ten years ago it would have easily sold for $1,000 as a museum piece.  Certainly one of the nicest telescopes of its kind we have ever handled. SOLD


The venerable and very prolific nautical instrument making firm of Spencer, Browning & Rust was formed by William Spencer II, Samuel Browning and Ebenezer Rust in 1784 at 66 Wapping, London.  They produced barometers, compasses, octants, sextants and telescopes.  Their famous trademark of “SBR” is often found stamped on the ivory scales of octants dating from the late 1700’s into the 1800’s.  Scottsman Alexander Adie took over the firm in 1819, but it continued under the same name until 1840.  (Gloria Clifton, “British Scientific Instrument makers 1550-1851, 1995, Zwemmer Publishers & The National Maritime Museum, London).


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21.15 IMPORTANT AMERICAN KALEIDOSCOPE. A very rare original example of the proud inventions coming out of the fledgling American industrial giant in the second half of the 1800’s. It is a Bush kaleidoscope, widely recognized as the best of its kind ever made. This patented “deluxe model” features Bush’s standard cardboard main body covered in faux black shark skin. The non-magnifying eyepiece has a glass lens. The “working end” of this kaleidoscope is one of Bush’s rare output featuring a rotating cardboard barrel with turned ebony spokes rather than his more common brass examples. The cylinder contains an array of ingenious liquid-filled glass vials and other intricate glass objects enclosed in glass. These unique items were a source of yet another Bush patent. On the top, the barrel isl labeled with the Bush trademark in gold, “C.G. BUSH & CO. PROVIDENCE R.I.” having an outline of his kaleidoscope, then “PATENTS REISSUED NOVEMBER 111873.” What makes this model “deluxe” is his patented quadrapedal walnut stand with legs which can be removed for transport. One of the legs is impressed “C.G. BUSH PAT.” Even in these days of computer graphics and neon, it is hard to believe what amazingly colorful and geometrically perfect imagery Bush was able to capture in his pre-electricity device, actually tilted downward to be illuminated by simple candlelight. Seeing is believing. Modern day video games don’t even compare. Nothing short of incredible! 13 inches high overall and 10 ½ inches long. The base footprint is 6 ¾ inches square. Amazing original condition, producing equally amazing images guaranteed to wow and delight! 1695 Special Packaging

Charles Bush (Busch) was born in Prussia in 1825. In 1847 he immigrated to Plymouth, Massachusetts and took up the rope-making trade of his father. Quite unexpectedly, his ongoing examination of rope fibers under a microscope ultimately lead to an interest in kaleidoscopes. Around 1870, while living in Providence, Rhode Island he developed and began manufacturing a high quality kaleidoscope with the help of his wife. His output was deemed “extraordinary” and his kaleidoscopes quickly found world-wide demand. Bush was granted several American patents in 1873 and 1874. One was for “new and useful objects for the object box.” Another was for his four-legged stand which could be disassembled for transport. That patent was dated Nov 17, 1874. By 1875 Bush was credited with having made 5,000 such instruments before he and his wife moved to Claremont, New Hampshire. Unfortunately, fewer than 1,000 of his original output are known to have survived today. As such the demand for authentic examples is very keen. Auction sales of these scarce instruments show prices of $1,500 and up, depending on condition, especially for the rare deluxe models.


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21.14  TRIPOD TELESCOPE.  Finest professional grade floor standing tripod telescope.  The ocular end of the main barrel is engraved “BARDOU & SON PARIS” and is further marked with the firm’s “Trade Mark” of a “G” and “B” flanking a Caduceus -- the sign of commerce.  This impressive 19th century optical instrument is all brass, mounted atop its handsome mahogany and brass tripod.  The 3 inch achromatic objective lens is signed internally “Bardou.”  With its 4 element erecting lens system the telescope provides a spectacular, highly magnified upright image of crystal clarity.  The main barrel measures 37 ¾ inches long.  The draw, operated by a precise rack and pinion focusing system, measures 18 inches long.  This makes the overall length nearly 56 inches.  It is supported on a freely training and elevating brass yoke mounted to a brass and mahogany support strut 20 inches high.  The strut fits into the turned mahogany turret head.  The head has a brass insert and a large wooden thumbscrew which locks the strut into place for comfortable viewing at any height.  The head stands atop the splayed mahogany tripod legs which have an adjustable footprint firmly set by large brass wing nuts at the top.  Each leg measures 52 inches long and is fitted with a brass ferrule at its tip.  With these features the telescope can be adjusted to a height of eye ranging from 56 to 72 inches!  Overall condition is excellent.  All of the brass surfaces are sealed and in a high polish.  The wood shows  good age free from cracks, chips or scratches.  Precise focusing is accomplished by turning the large knurled focusing knob on the observer’s right, which operates with a smooth, tight action.  The optics are perfect.  A most handsome and functional focal piece for the living room or office with a view.  The best  SOLD


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21.12  ANCIENT MARINER’s SPYGLASS.  Very early “decahedral” (10-sided) long glass of English origin with the objective dust slide hand-engraved in old fashioned flourishing script “Dollond London.”  This remaining relic from the early days of sail has a long wooden barrel carved from a single piece of mahogany in the 10-sided form.  The objective and ocular ends both contain their original, functional dust slides.  Indicative of its early origins the objective lens is pre-achromatic, meaning it is a simple single lens which predates Dollond’s introduction of the achromatic lens in 1758.  Also telling of its great age are two other significant features.  It has a “5” element erecting system instead of the typical 4 found in telescopes from the 1750 onward.  In addition, the lenses are simply loose and screwed into their retainers with a threaded ring.  Later telescope makers rolled their lenses into a brass seat to firmly secure them.  This is a significant observation in dating such early instruments.   Another is the draw tube wtih  early form “nipple” eye piece which pulls out of the end of the main barrel with no stop – a feature added to most telescopes around 1775!  Adding to its value and appeal this telescope was decoratively wrapped in ‘small stuff’ (using sailor terms) in a seamanlike manner and then tarred.  Cleverly, the sailor left a hand hold on the wood in the proper position for supporting the telescope when viewing.  This is the first time we have encountered such work, clearly indicating its shipboard use!  All lenses are original and in perfect condition, providing a good highly magnified upright image with the expected color distortion on the periphery of the field – the phenomenon Dollond later addressed with his patent.  This telescope has a very slight reverse taper – again another sign of early manufacture.  Its barrel measures 1 5/8 inches in diameter on the objective end and 1 3/4 inches on the ocular.  It is 25 3/8 inches long closed and telescopes to 32 inches measured at infinity.  Overall condition is excellent, untouched, original, just like a museum would want to have it!  And a museum piece it is -- well over 260 years old.  1449

Peter Dollond (1731-1821) was the son of John Dollond, a Huguenot silk weaver in Kensington, England.   Peter apprenticed to his father in the trade, but his father's amateur interest in optics inspired him so much that in 1850 he opened an optical shop in London.  Two years later his father joined him in the venture.   With his father, and subsequently with his younger brother and nephew, Dollond designed and manufactured a number of innovative optical and scientific instruments.  John Dollond received a patent for his achromatic telescope lens in 1758.   In 1763, his son Peter, received a second Royal patent for what was described as an “apochromat.”  The telescope offered here, greatly precedes these innovations.

Dollond telescopes were among the most popular in England and abroad for more than 150 years.  Lord Admiral Nelson carried one.  Another sailed with Captain Cook to observe the Transit of Venus in 1769.  Dollond's more notable customers included composer Leopold Mozart, Frederick the Great and Thomas Jefferson.

After successfully defending a legal challenge of his patent, Dollond's business flourished.   His reputation and the fact that his father was a member of the Royal Society, afforded them access to the best raw materials available at the time for their manufacture.  This privilege permitted Dollond to maintain an edge in quality over his competitor's optical instruments for many years, even after his patent rights had expired.


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21.11   HISTORIC, VERY RARE PRESENTATION TELESCOPE!   Without question the  most significant presentation item we have offered in our 35+ years, involving the Queen of England and an American President!  This classic two-draw mariner’s telescope is all brass with original optics, eyepiece and objective fittings,  beautifully-engraved in fancy script on the draw near the eyepiece “Dollond, London, Day or Night”  The eyepiece with original dust slide is of the early-form “nipple” type.  The perfect 1 ¾ inch achromatic objective lens is protected by a press-fit lens cap with its own sliding dust cover.  The body of the telescope is housed in a rich Moroccan leather covering in like new condition.  The piece-de-resistance of this offering is the meticulously hand-engraved inscription on the sun shade barrel.  It reads:

Presented
On behalf of
~ Queen Victoria ~
~ by ~
JAMES BUCHANAN, ESQ.
her Majestys Consul for NEW-YORK
~to~
~Mr. SAMUEL RICH~
First Officer of the Packet Ship Rhone
JAMES WOTTEN ESQr COMMANDER
as an acknowledgement of his humane Efforts in
rescuing from Death
~CAPTAIN McNICOLL~
and ten of the crew of the
British Barque Belinda of
TROON
Upon the 22nd day of November
~ 1840~

The inscription is clear, deep and untouched.  The surrounding brass has acquired a deep statuary bronze patina that does not appear to have been polished or cleaned since its inception 177 years ago!   The telescope itself is in an amazing state of preservation and is fully functional providing a highly magnified upright image of great clarity.  The draws pull in and out with a smooth, tight fit.  It measures 15 inches closed by 2 ½ inches in diameter and extends to 38 ½ inches long.  Without a doubt this exquisite lifesaving relic would find a prominent place in any major American or British Museum.  6295

Even more interesting provenance could be found for this important historical relic by researching the American packet ship RHONE and the British bark BELINDA.

Alexandra Victoria (1819 – 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom from 1837 until 1901.  Her reign of 63+ years was known as the “Victorian Era,” at the peak of the British Empire.  It was a period which saw the greatest cultural, political, scientific and industrial changes in world history.  Only recently was the duration of Victoria’s reign eclipsed by the current British monarch Queen Elizabeth II.

James Buchanan Jr. (1791 – 1868) was the 15th President of the United States (1857 – 61), serving immediately prior to the American Civil War and the Presidency of Abraham Lincoln.   A member of the Democratic Party, he was the 17th United States Secretary of State and served in the United States Senate and United States House of Representatives.

Buchanan was born in Pennsylvania and became a prominent lawyer in the town of Lancaster.  He was first elected to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in 1820 and later won a seat in the United States House of Representatives, aligned with Andrew Jackson's Democratic Party.  President Jackson appointed him Minister to Russia.  It was during that time he made this presentation on behalf of Queen Victoria.  Soon after, Buchanan was elected senator of Pennsylvania.  In 1845, he accepted President James K. Polk's appointment as Secretary of State.   While in that position, the land mass of the United States grew tremendously with the addition of the Oregon Territory and annexation of the Southwest as a result of the Mexican War.   From 1853 to 1856, during the presidency of Franklin Pierce (1853 – 1856) Buchanan served as the United States’ Ambassador to Britain.   Buchanan won his party's Presidential nomination in 1856, defeating Pierce and Senator Stephen Douglas at the 1856 Democratic National Convention.  He went on to become President, defeating Fremont and Fillmore in the 1856 election.  He was succeeded by Abraham Lincoln in 1860.

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21.10  EARLY SEA CAPTAIN’s SPYGLASS.  Extra nice, early 1800’s English hand-held telescope signed by the makers on the ocular end of the main barrel “ASHMORE & OSBORNE, DAY OR NIGHT LONDON.”  This classic 2-draw sea telescope has a large wooden body turned from a solid piece of rich mahogany.  Both ends are of brass, attached with tiny screws to the wood.  The perfect objective lens is of the achromatic type (hence the description “day or night”) and is protected by a press fit cover with spring-loaded dust slide.  All internal optics are original and free from flaws.  The eyepiece is of the early “nipple” type, and retains its original dust slide as well.  The two draws slide in and out smoothly with a nice tight fit.  The highly magnified image is surprisingly clear and bright with no distortion typical of many telescopes of this early vintage.   It measures 16 inches closed and lengthens to 3 feet ½ inch fully extended.  Overall cosmetic and functional condition is outstanding.  The wooden barrel is in its original finish, free from cracks or dents, yet exhibiting good age from years of careful use.  All brass surfaces show a rich age patina.  This is just about as nice a telescope of its type that can be found.  Over 185 years old!  SOLD


William Ashmore and Thomas Osborne were partners as opticians, spectacle makers and optical instrument makers from 1825 to 1837.  (Gloria Clifton, “Directory of British Scientific Instrument makers 1550-1851,” 1995, The National Maritime Museum).


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21.07  17th CENTURY TELESCOPE.  Very rare, late 17th or very early 18th century mariner’s telescope in the Galileo style by the Italian master Leonardo Semiticolo as impressed on the ocular end of the main barrel.  This 2-draw telescope is made of paper and vellum with turned horn eye pieces, sections and ends.  Its clever construction makes for a very lightweight instrument manageable with a single hand.  The red orange barrel is decorated with recurring geometric, floral and bead-like designs.  The 2 draws are greenish yellow with a mottled surface.  Both are marked with concentric rings indicating the position of distention for infinity.  The eye piece of turned horn is of the early “nipple” form retaining its original screw-on dust cap.  Remarkably, the objective also retains it original dust cover.  This is absolutely amazing after more than 300 years!  The telescope measures 28 inches long fully extended and compresses to 12 ½ inches closed.  The original optics provide a surprisingly clear, highly magnified image with the expected chromatic aberration characteristic of pre-1750 telescopes.  Excellent condition in all respects.  A true museum piece.  Price Request 


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21.06  TELESCOPE TRIPOD.  Genuine early 19th century table tripod for a premium quality library telescope of the period.  This authentic, heavy solid brass tripod is of English origin with lovely Queen Anne cabriolet tripod legs which support a gradually tapered strut.   This strut supports the telescope mount at the top.  The mount is fully articulated with train and elevation functions which are smooth and tight with no play – as required of such a quality instrument.   24 ½ inches long overall.  19 inches tall as configured.  The footprint is 14 ¼ inches on the three legs.   Weight 8 pounds.   Outstanding original condition in a high polished brass finish with preservation coating.  Guaranteed to be over 100 years old.   695

A telescope adapted to this tripod, will easily double in value.


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21.04  ANTIQUE TELESCOPE.  Very scarce octagonal barrel captain’s spyglass dating from the early 18th century.  It is a genuine relic from the early days of sail made in England which features a long 8-side barrel carved from a single piece of rich mahogany.  This old sea veteran has several distinctive features which reveal its great age.  It has the early form reverse taper characteristic of telescopes manufactured from the 1680's.  The objective end with traditional brass collar has a sliding lens cover housing its single piece objective lens measuring only 7/8ths inches in diameter!  The draw tube contains only three (not the usual 4) erecting lenses.  These single element lenses are held in by threaded retainers, not rolled in as with later 18th and 19th century telescopes.  The ocular consists of a later knurled brass eye cup with built-in pivoting dust cover.  Another early aspect is the fact that the draw tube slides in and out of the barrel freely with no stop.  In combination the all original lens system provides a magnified image with the telltale “chromatic fringe” characteristic of the earliest telescopes.  Cosmetically it is in outstanding original condition with no dents cracks or other flaws – just great old age.  25 inches long closed and 30 ½ inches long extended.  A beautiful example approximately 300 years old. Certainly a museum piece!  Price Request

The technology of lens making and the grinding of optical glass was in its infancy at the time this telescope was made.  Glass, without occlusions was hard to make.  Accordingly, lens makers reverted to small, thin glass lenses which could be enhanced by increasing their focal lenth.  The result was the charateristic long telesope barrel with very small objective lens.  But Peter Dolland's patent of the achromatic lens in 1758 changed telescope manufacturing for the ages.


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21.03   U.S. NAVY TRIPOD TELESCOPE.   Absolutely the ultimate in U.S. Naval optics, this is a pre-World War II vintage flag bridge telescope.  A precious few such telescopes were also configured for exploratory landing party use and were mounted to their rarely found U.S. Navy terrestrial tripods..  Because of the stresses and abuse that such arduous use inflicted, few survived.  Represented here is a very scarce original example in virtually perfect condition in all respects!  Made of heavy solid brass this telescope has the finest state-of-the-art optics of its time produced by the highly respected Bausch & Lomb Optical Co. as marked on the silver maker’s plaque on top of the barrel:  “SHIP’s TELESCOPE Mk I MOD.  BU. SHIP’S U.S. NAVY (N) 255, 1940  B & L OPT CO.”  The barrel has two sighting pins mounted on top and a built-in sun shade protecting the 3 inch objective lens.   A large handle is attached to the left side for conveniently training and elevating.  A set of internal rotating filters are provided for maximum clarity in sunlit, hazy or low light conditions.   They are selected by means of a knurled brass knob just below the eyepiece.  The ocular provides a 28X image of exceptional clarity and brightness.  Of immense added value and versatility, there are an additional 4 interchangeable eyepieces of 12, 14, 22 and 32 powers! Focusing is accomplished by turning the knurled adjustment ring with a range of -4 to +2 diopters in ¼ increments.  The telescope body is supported by its extremely heavy thick bronze collar with trunnions suspended in the equally heavy solid bronze yoke.  Removal of the telescope when not in use is made by loosening the hinged trunnion caps with knurled locking lugs.  The yoke has a stout bronze support spindle which fits snugly into the tripod “spider,” complete with bearing and even a zerk grease fitting!  The end of the spindle is finished off with an extra large brass cap nut.  The yoke bears a silver maker’s tag reading, “MOUNT For SHIP’s TELESCOPE Mk I Mod.  BU. SHIP’S 1940 B & L OPT. CO.”  the spider is also solid bronze and is marked in high relief “U.S. NAVY Tripod model 660 U.S. Metal Products Co., New York.”  A brass collar fits over the spindle allowing the height of eye to be raised or lowered by 5 inches.  The high quality tripod legs, made of finest hardwood maple have all brass fittings and are tipped with bronze “feet.”   A central brass chain allows for splaying the legs to different widths.  This feature allows for further height adjustment and stability.  The legs are detachable from the spider by means of large brass butterfly wing nuts.  The barrel of the telescope measures 28 ½ inches long as pictured with protective screw-on ocular cover.  The barrel is 4 ¾ inches in diameter.  The entire assembly stands 64 ½ inches tall as shown.  This measurement is with the 5 inch height adjusting collar inserted.   The footprint of the tripod as shown is 29 inches between each leg.  The condition, both cosmetically and functionally of the entire unit is nothing short of spectacular -- particularly in light of the fact it is over 75 years old! At the time of its manufacture, this unit cost the Government more than the price of a car. SOLD


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21.79 EXTRA FANCY VICTORIAN ERA STEREO VIEWER AND MAGNIFIER.  This beautiful, high quality optical instrument is as decorative as it is functional.  It consists of three-tiers of ebonized hardwood profusely engraved with floral decorations embellish in gold.  On the top front is a large monocular lens for viewing photographs in detail.  Below it a pair of oculars are for viewing stereo cards.   A height-adjustable pierced wooden support mounted on two brass rods is provided for holding a card or photo.  It is also adjustable for depth, sliding back and forward in grooves on each side.  The front of this viewer is hinged with a brass “stay” on the right to lock it in the upright viewing position.  When not in use it folds closed on a friction latch.  The bottom tier is equipped with a wooden track and folding arm which allows the viewer to be inclined to one of three preset angles.  The front bears the oval brass maker’s plaque reading “76  .UNIS . FRANCE  3   STEREOSCOPES -  PARIS”  10 ½  inches long by 6 ¾ inches wide and 3 inches thick when closed, elevating to a working height of 16 ¾ inches.  Superb original condition. 1395

This offering comes complete with several stereo viewing cards with extremely interesting subject matter.


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21.86

21.86  EARLY TELESCOPE by IMPORTANT MAKER.  Especially rare, 10-sided, reverse tapered spyglass made by the famous London optician and nautical instrument maker George Adams.  This wonderful surviving example of a decahedral telescope is signed on the single draw in elegant cursive script “Adams, London.”   Evidencing its early origins this spyglass has an unusual 5 element erecting system in the single draw vs. the usual 4.  The lenses are held in by threaded retainers instead of being “rolled in,” as exemplified in later telescopes.  Together with the singlet, non-achromatic objective lens 1 1/8 inches in diameter, the system provides a sharp, highly magnified image with the typical peripheral chromatic aberration characteristic of pre-1750 telescopes.  The barrel is constructed of one solid piece of mahogany, hollowed out in the traditional decahedral form.  The draw, with early-form “nipple” has no stop, meaning it will pull free from the main barrel.  Again this is a characteristic indicative of only the earliest hand held telescopes.  Both of the spring-loaded objective and ocular dust slides are in place and operate properly.  The overall condition of this telescope can only be described as nothing short of amazing original condition in consideration of its seaborne life spanning more than 260 years!  The barrel is in its original finish with expected minor scuffs and mars from actual use.  All of the brass components have acquired a rich, deep age patina.  All 6 of the original glass lenses are in perfect condition.  31 inches long overall.  The main barrel measures 24 ½ inches long and is 1 ¾ inches thick at the widest.  Another of our truly museum quality offerings representing a real prize for the finest collection.   2600

George Adams (the first) was without question a premiere English maker of his time.  Born in 1698, he was apprenticed to James Parker in 1724 and began his own business at Shoe Lane, London in 1733.  In 1750 he received a patent for his telescope and was awarded the honor of appointment as maker to the Prince of Wales, George III, in 1760.  (Gloria Clifton, “Directory of British Scientific Instrument Makers 1440-1851,” 1995, The National Maritime Museum.)

Peter Dollond (1731-1821,) son of inventor John Dollond, was widely credited with producing an effective achromatic lens, for which he was granted a Royal patent in 1758.  Up to that time limitations in glass making and lens grinding had made it necessary to manufacture small, thin lenses with long focal lengths in order to obtain maximum magnification.   Accordingly, early high-powered refracting telescopes such as this example, required unusually long barrels in relationship to the diameter of their objective lens.


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21.4  BINOCULAR MICROSCOPE.   High grade 19th C. English microscope made for the American market, signed and serial numbered on the base "R. & J. Beck, London 7072." and further engraved on the main tube "J W QUEEN & Co. Agents, Philadelphia & New York."  This finely crafted all brass compound microscope features adjustable Wenham-style binocular body tubes mounted on a sturdy base and stands 14 inches tall as shown. It is complete with a total of 4 objectives and 4 ocular lenses.  It is housed in a lovely African mahogany box with brass furniture measuring 16 inches long.  The lower till houses numerous glass slides while the upper section holds the additional optics, with 11 slots being empty including a separate slot for a light magnifier which is also missing.  Of course the beauty of the innovation embodied in this microscope was the fact that the researcher could view a particular object with both eyes providing a clearer stereoscopic subject.  This rare instrument is in excellent, untouched original condition with most of its original lacquered surfaces.  It is functional and all adjustments operate smoothly and properly.  A most handsome presentation! 2195

The body tubes of this microscope were designed by W. H. Wenham in 1861, and are adjustable by means of a knurled knob that controls a rack and pinion gear set.  A triangular base supports the limb, which has an adjustable inclination angle through a series of holes in the limb that fit a tabbed hinge plate.  Coarse focus is achieved through a set of knobs that move the inner pillar tube up and down through a rack gear set.  The top of the pillar contains a fine focus knob.  A circular stage contains a central aperture and has a slide carrier to assist in translating specimens during viewing.  According to Turner, this form of the microscope stand was designed specifically to accommodate the Wenham binocular tube and was called "The Popular Microscope".

Richard and Joseph Beck joined in a partnership as opticians at 31 Cornhill, London from 1867-1894.  They were noted for their fine quality microscopes, and were admitted to the Microscopial Society of London.  

James W. Queen & Co. were in business as opticians at 48 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia from 1860-1893.


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21.96  18th C. TELESCOPE.  Excellent late 18th century table tripod telescope made by one of England’s most noted makers of the 1700’s, “John Browning, London” as signed in lovely hand-engraved script on the eyepiece. This handsome telescope is of the refracting type with a perfect  2  inch achromatic objective lens, which in combination with the original internal optics produces a clear, upright image of surprising clarity and magnification.  It was hand- made from the finest quality pure brass and is in a bright lacquered finish.  To aid in sighting a distant object this telescope is equipped with an auxiliary “sighting scope” to pinpoint the subject.  The main ocular draw slides in and out for coarse focusing and a precision rack and pinion system with a knurled knob accomplishes fine focusing with a tight action.   An added bonus is that this telescope comes with a second interchangeable eyepiece providing the viewer with the choice of two magnifying powers.  One of the eyepieces is marked “135.”  Both accept an interchangeable screw-on sun filter cap.  What’s more, this scope is equipped with the scarce and highly prized feature of having a right angle prismatic eyepiece which provides easy viewing without having to look down the axis of the telescope when it is pointed skyward.  The heavy solid brass tripod with Queen Anne cabriole legs makes for a stable viewing platform.  The tripod base measures 10 inches wide from leg to leg.  The main barrel is 38 1/2 inches long and  is 3 1/8 inches in diameter.  Overall it measures 43 inches long at infinity.  This telescope is complete with its original mahogany box having brass hinges, unique pivoting box closures and its original functional skeleton lock with key!  The early, hand-dovetailed solid wood (not plywood) construction of the box lent itself to cracks as the wood dried over the centuries.  However the cracks have been stabilized with an old repair and the box is quite sturdy and functional.  The box measures  40 inches long by 8 1/2 inches wide and is 5 5/8 inches thick.  Cosmetically this telescope is in virtually perfect condition and the original optics render an image of unbelievable clarity and magnification for such an instrument well over 200 years old!.  Price Request Special Packaging

John Browning (I) was a mathematical instrument maker who worked in London from 1781 – 1811.  He was apprenticed to Richard Rust in 1768 although he was apparently not involved in the prolific scientific instrument making firm of Spencer, Browning & Rust which worked contemporarily from 1784.  (Gloria Clifton, “Dictionary of British Scientific Instrument Makers 1550-1851,”  1995, The National Maritime Museum, London).


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21.90

 

21.90  U.S. NAVY TELESCOPE.   Incredible WWII vintage ship's shore party tripod telescope bearing the brass maker's tag reading:

U.S. NAVY
BUREAU OF SHIPS
1944
JOHN E. HAND & SONS CO.
PHILADELPHIA

This all brass telescope, with state-of-the-art optics, is 6 inches in diameter and measures 26 inches long overall, inclusive of its built-in sun shade. It is fitted with a 14 power eyepiece which provides an exceptionally clear highly magnified image with a wide field of view.  Still fully functional is the internal 3-way filter system useful in viewing through haze and glare.  For stability, the 'turret top' of the tripod is made from a massive piece of solid cast brass bearing the raised inscription "U.S NAVY TRIPOD Model 660 New York."   The equally substantial solid brass yoke allows the telescope to pivot from side to side and up and down (train and elevation) with a smooth, tight action.  The legs of this telescope are of heavy solid mahogany, beautifully tapered with cast brass tips.  The entire presentation stands 66 inches tall as shown and 49 inches to the top of the tripod turret head.   The telescope barrel itself is 22 ½ inches long.  The yoke also provides a 2-position height of eye adjustment feature!   This is done by means of a spacer which adds 5 inches of height.  Another nice feature of this telescope is that it affords the same magnification, with a wider field of view, as most conventional telescopes which are much longer.   This is accomplished by a complex system of prisms within the barrel. The shorter barrel also lends itself to display and use in limited space.  Absolutely superb condition cosmetically and optically.  This is the best functional tripod telescope available anywhere on today's antique market, and THE most desirable! SOLD

When looking through this telescope in our shop, the common response from our customers is WOW!

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Description: 21.76

21.76 EARLY SEA CAPTAIN’s LONG GLASS. Especially nice hand-held telescope made by the famous optician and mathematical instrument maker Thomas Harris, as beautifully engraved in script near the eyepiece, “T. Harris, London Night & Day.” This fine, olde English example has an early form single draw with wooden barrel and brass fittings. The ocular end “nipple” is indicative of telescopes circa 1800, retaining its spring-loaded sliding dust cover. The large wooden barrel is turned of a singlepiece of solid mahogany which is in its original black finish. The objective end houses the old greenish glass achromatic lens which is protected by its press-fit cap with built-in sliding dust cover! The all original optics produce a highly magnified, upright image of surprising clarity. This genuine Captain’s spyglass measures 20 ¾ inches closed, 35 ¼ inches long fully extended and is 2 ½ inches in diameter. It is in a very nice state of original preservation. There are the expected age checks in the solid wooden barrel. Such cracks are present in all wooden articles over 200 years old. But this venerable example evidences great respect and careful use lavished upon it for over 2 centuries! 995

According to Gloria Clifton, author of “British Scientific Instrument Makers 1550-1851”, 1995 Philip Wilson Publishers Ltd., London, Thomas Harris (I) worked as an optician, mathematical and philosophical instrument maker and a globe maker from 1790 to 1826. In 1804 he was recorded as working at 140 Fleet Street, London. Thereafter, an address of 52 Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, London is cited.


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