Electric Pointolite Lamp

Physics

Accession Number: 2009.ph.96

Description:

This is a black metal box with perforations on the sides. The bottom of the box has four ceramic feet to stand on. The top of the box has a wooden knob with a metal knob sitting on top. A wire wrapped in cloth extends from a wooden knob for 145 cm. Adjacent to the wooden knob are three uniform holes in a triangular pattern.

Alternative Name:

Primary Materials: Metal, Wood, Synthetic, Thread

Markings:

Engraved plates on the top read “110 Volts DC” “Ediswan Pointolite Resistance” “Push & Release quickly” “If polarity doubtful and arc will not strike reverse plug.”

Dimensions (cm): 17.5 cm x 14 cm x 11.3 cm

Function:

This lamp is a system for providing a very bright point of light.

Condition:

Fair. The box of the lamp is in good condition. The metal surface of the metal terminal on the lid is corroded. There are three holes in the lid that suggest a component is missing. The wire of the lamp is synthetic material covered with wound thread; it is badly degraded. The thread is missing in parts and the synthetic material is cracked, in places leaving bare wire underneath.

Associated Instruments:

Manufacturer: Ediswan

Date of Manufacture: c. 1930s

Provenance:

University of Toronto Department of Physics

Additional Information and References:

Compare with this similar object at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History: Pointolite Resistance, Ediswan and this object at the Oxford Museum for the History of Science: Electric Pointolite Lamp, by Ediswan.

Historical Notes: