Smithsonian - National Museum of American History, Behring Center

Physical Sciences Collection - Surveying and Geodesy

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Dumpy Level - click to enlarge

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Dumpy Level

Catalogue number:

"C. L. Berger & Sons, Boston 10316"

telescope 17.5 inches long

This dumpy level is one of six identical instruments that the Interstate Commerce Commission of New Jersey ordered in July 1914, each one to be engraved "INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION." Berger described it as an instrument "of great precision, superior to any Wye Level of same aperture, power of telescope, and same sensitiveness of spirit level." Berger went on to say that it was the "best instrument for use in distant lands and rough country on account of its great compactness, simplicity, strength to withstand rough treatment, permanency of adjustment, and steadiness in strong wind, requiring but ordinary attention and care to keep in working order." New, it cost $100 (or $113 with fixed stadia wires).

Ref: C. L. Berger & Sons, Inc., Engineering, Surveying & Mining Instruments (Boston, 1912), pp. 130-131.

Chicago Steel Tape-Berger Instruments (Document Management Systems, 1995), Book 32, p. 90.

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