Smithsonian - National Museum of American History, Behring Center

 
Physical Sciences Collection - Surveying and Geodesy

Browse Makers | Browse Instruments | Index

Back
 

Theodolite - click to enlarge

Click photos to enlarge.

Theodolite

Catalogue number:
PH*314634

Inscriptions:
"Thomas Jones, 4 Rupert St London"

Dimensions:
height 13.625 inches; horizontal circle 5.5 inches diameter; vertical circle 5.5 diameter; telescope 10.25 inches long; striding level 4.25 inches

Discussion:

Thomas Jones (1775-1852) learned the instrument trade from Jesse Ramsden in London, and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 1835. This theodolite--a very early example of a transit theodolite--is one of several instruments that he made for the United States Coast Survey in the 1840s. The horizontal and vertical circles are silvered, and read by verniers and magnifiers to 30 seconds.

Ref: Gloria Clifton, Directory of British Scientific Instrument Makers 1550-1851 (London, 1995), p. 154.

Further Information:

Theodolite

Back