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Grunow Brothers
Compound Binocular Microscope

This elegantly-crafted binocular microscope was designed by Professor J. L. Riddell of the University of Louisiana and made by the Grunow brothers of New Haven, Connecticut in 1853. The model featured below was redrawn from a photograph of the original microscope, which is part of the Billings microscope collection at Walter Reed Army Hospital in Washington DC.

The entire microscope rests on a horseshoe base that supports a central pillar, and two flanking pillars that hold the stage. Specimens are secured to the stage with standard clips and the substage condenser assembly consists of a single bi-convex lens and a double mirror. The Riddell body is attached to the central pillar and focus is achieved through a rack and pinion system that elevates and lowers the body with respect to the stage. The two eyetubes are connected to a pinion attached to two flat bars that allow horizontal movement of the tubes.


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