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(Gloria Clifton, “British Scientific Instrument makers 1550-1851, 1995, Zwemmer Publishers & The National Maritime Museum, London).21.15 IMPORTANT AMERICAN KALEIDOSCOPE. Quite unexpectedly, his ongoing examination of rope fibers under a microscope ultimately lead to an interest in kaleidoscopes.
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. Around 1870, while living in Providence, Rhode Island he developed and began manufacturing a high quality kaleidoscope with the help of his wife.
The head stands atop the splayed mahogany tripod legs which have an adjustable footprint firmly set by large brass wing nuts at the top.
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 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 draw, operated by a precise rack and pinion focusing system, measures 18 inches long. 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.