British instrument maker William J. Salmon designed and built this unique wooden-based all purpose compound microscope in the mid nineteenth century.
The microscope is constructed with an unusual oak stand that uses a long plank as the limb and a shorter piece of oak as a foot. Using a clamp, the microscope can be positioned horizontally on a table to view fish and other organisms in an aquarium. Alternatively, the microscope can be positioned vertically and clamped so that specimens in a trough or petri dish can be visualized. A third arrangement reverses the stand so the long arm of the plank can be repositioned as a stage for dissection. The monocular body tube has a compound objective and eyepiece and is illuminated by reflection from a substage concave mirror. According to notes from the Royal Microscopical Society, the instrument was donated by William B. Carpenter who is quoted:
"The instrument has been made for Mr. Warington and for the Author by Mr. Salmon, 100 Fenchurch-street; who supplies it, on either plan, without objectives or case, but with condenser and stage forceps, for 3 guineas."
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