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William Salmon Brass Compound Microscope

British instrument maker William J. Salmon built his brass compound microscope with a sturdy Y-shaped foot and three screw-in footpads around 1850. An illustration of the instrument based on a photograph and description in Gerard Turner's book entitled The Great Age of Microscopy is featured below.

A single, stout brass pillar supports the body of the microscope, which, along with the stage, may be inclined though the help of trunnions. The illumination system for transparent specimens consists of a substage plano-concave mirror without a condenser. Above the stage, a bull's eye condenser and stage forceps permit the examination of opaque objects. A rack and pinion mechanism built onto a bar within the limb accommodates the instrument's coarse focus, while a lever on the nosepiece may be adjusted for fine focus. The controls for translating the brass mechanical stage are below the right side of the square-shaped stage. The microscope is engraved "W. J. Salmon 254 Whitechapel Road London" and is part of the permanent Royal Microscopical Society collection.


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