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3.22  VERY EARLY ENGLISH SEXTANT.  Class “A” mariner’s navigational sextant engraved in lovely script “Imray & Son, 89 & 102 Minories London.”  This old instrument has a solid brass large arc inlaid with a silver scale reading from -5 to 155 degrees, effectively making it a "quintant."  The degree scale is subdivided to 15 arc minutes.  It is overlaid by the pivoting index arm with silver vernier scale left-divided from 0 – 15 minutes, subdivided to 15 arc seconds.  This allowed the observer to take a reading down to a 15 second accuracy or ¼ mile!  The reading is made with the knurled thumbscrew stop and the knurled tangential thumbscrew fine adjustment knob.  To aid in taking the reading a pivoting magnifier is set above the scale.   This quality instrument is the standard form of the era with braced brass frame and index arm, both index and horizon mirrors, 3 multi-colored index filters, 3 multi-colored horizon filters and a height adjustable sighting tube holder, all in perfect shape.  The rear of the sextant has 2 brass “feet” and an early form sculpted ebony handle.  It is contained in its old style “keystone” box (not square) made of figural African mahogany with very thin hand-dove-tailed joints.  The box is totally complete with all 3 sighting tubes:  a long telescope, a short telescope, and a peep tube, screw-on eye piece and mirror box adjusting tool.  The lid bears the label of Imray’s neighbor “A. Johansen 149 Minories.” The box itself has some typical age-related drying cracks which do not affect its soundness.  The lid is minus its brass shield inlay.  It is complete with its box lock and 2 hook and eye closures.  The sextant itself measures 10 inches wide on the large arc and 9 1/8 inches long on the index arm.  The box measures 12 inches wide by 10 ½ inches long and 4 5/8 inches thick.  Circa1850.  Overall this is an exceptional surviving relic from the days of sail 170 years old!  Try finding one this good on eBay!  WAS 1195  NOW! 795  

James Imray was a nautical instrument maker and chart publisher in London beginning in1846.  His last address was 102 Minories, London in 1851.  The house number of “89” engraved on this instrument suggests it dates earlier than his final address.  (Gloria Clifton, “Directory of British Scientific Instrument makers 1550-1851,” 1995, The National Maritime Museum, Philip Wilson Publishers Ltd.)

box perspective

box label



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5.51  ADMIRAL’s TABLE SERVICE.  Rare, authentic pre-World War II U.S. Navy gravy boat used in the Vice Admiral’s Mess of an American capital ship.  This splendid example is oval in shape and is complete with its built-in tray/base, cover and serving spoon.  The exterior of the boat is embellished with the hand-engraved emblem of three stars encircling the initials “U.S.N.”  This is the “fancy” model with the “ropework” trim on the tray and cover.   The cover fits the boat  precisely and bears a decorative acorn finial on the top.  The base is signed “R. WALLACE Silver Soldered.”  This silverplate item has a base metal of brass.  Many lesser table service items had a base metal of iron which corroded over time.  The interior of this example is perfect, still fit for actual use!   It measures 8 inches long by 5 3/4 inches wide and stands 5 inches high.  Outstanding original condition.  229


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13.46  EARLY CHRONOMETER BY NOTED MAKERS.  Second quarter of the 1800’s English navigational timekeeper signed on the dial in lovely script “Litherland Davies Co., LIVERPOOL 1113.”  This diminutive machine has a silvered brass dial with Roman numerals and a minute chapter swept by solid gold spade hands!  The seconds bit below the XII shows individual seconds marked by 10’s and also having a gold hand.  The Up/Down indicator above the VI is marked from 0 to 56 in 8 hour intervals and bears the additional notations “DOWN, 2 DAYS, WIND and ~UP~.”  Indicative of its early manufacture it has a classic domed glass crystal with a silvered reflector ring.  The unusually small movement is a mere 2 ¼ inches in diameter.   The decoratively-spotted all brass full plate movement has a combination of brass and blued steel screws.  It has a bi-metallic balance with large timing weights, a blued steel helical hairspring, diamond end stone, spring détente escapement and of course a chain drive fusee.  The winding arbor which extends to the bottom of the tub has a protective dust cup.  The back of the dial is stamped “1113.”  All of this is housed in the weighted brass tub which, in an unusual departure from the normal, is stamped on the inside “LITHERLAND DAVIES & Co. 1113 LIVERPOOL.”  The tub is slung in gimbals with a functional gimbal lock positioned on the front right of the box.  The brass chronometer winding key is housed at the left rear.  Speaking to its early age the chronometer and gimbal are very compact.  The lovely 3 section box is made of rich, brass-bound mahogany.  The lower tier has a blank inlaid ivory disc and a key escutcheon in the form of a 4 leaf clover.  The middle tier has a button latch with a matching brass clover inlay.  The upper lid has yet another matching clover inlay.  The sides of the box have classic folding brass drop handles.  The box lock is complete and functional with its original skeleton key.  The box measures 6 ¼ inches square by 7 inches tall.   Functionally and cosmetically excellent condition.  The chronometer is a strong runner running for more than 2 days on a single wind.  4850  Special PackagingBack to Top

Peter Litherland and Richard Davies established their chronometer making business at 47 Brownlow Hill, Liverpool in 1816.  Both men had extensive horological backgrounds.  Peter is credited with inventing and patenting his rack lever escapement in 1791.  The firm went on to manufacture about 1300 chronometers before ending its manufactory in 1842.  In 1841 Litherland & Davies won the coveted first place in the Greenwich chronometer trials with their number 915.


in box



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18.97  EARLY AMERICAN ANCHOR LAMP.   Extra rare, solid brass ship’s anchor lamp of the classic early “bird cage” type made by America’s preeminent shipware maker as embossed on the bottom of the font “M’F’D’R’D BY PPERKINS MARINE LAMP CORPRN BROOKLYN – NEW YORK.”  This handsome lantern is entirely handmade with meticulous attention to detail, such as internal covers over the lower vents in the lamp to prevent wind from blowing out the flame.  The gauge of the brass is extremely thick and obviously hand-formed.  The virtually perfect thick glass lens is of the Freznel “lighthouse” type used to focus the lamp’s output on the horizon.  To the ends the original font and burner fit into the underside of the lamp with a bayonet twist.  The wedge-type burner with wick advance knob is embossed “VORTEX.”  Telling of its early manufacture this predates burners made by Perkins which were later marked “PERKO.”  This antique navigational lamp stands 14 inches tall and 6 inches in diameter at the base.  It is in excellent overall condition noting some very minor bumps in the base and a rich deep age patina.  A lovely old maritime lantern over 100 years old!  419

Frederick Persky, a Russian immigrant, schooled in Germany as a machinist, came to the United States in 1890 and soon found work at the nautical instrument making firm of John Bliss &Company in Brooklyn, New York.  In the very early 1900's he and a partner began their own business, F. Persky & Company, Lantern Manufacturer, out of his house.

In 1907, Frederick's son Louis joined him in the business, and together they enlarged the product line and their manufacturing facilities.  By 1912, under then name of Perkins Marine Lamp Corporation, they were manufacturing a variety of nautical lanterns and had begun producing an expanded line of marine products.  Five generations later, PERKO is still a privately owned, family operated corporation, operating out of Miami, Florida in 1960.




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