Penlight Batteries

Astronomy

Accession Number: 2019.ast.163.1-3

Description:

These are three small roughly “AA”-sized “Penlight” batteries. Two of these (2019.ast.163.1-2) are “Beacon Battery Company” brand, the third (2019.ast.163.3) is “Ray-O-Vac”. Each of these is cylindrical and has a slightly protruding connector at one end, and a flat other end. All three are wrapped in paper labels which give information about the battery.

Markings:

On the “Beacon” batteries: “BEACON PENLIGHT BATTERY
MADE IN CANADA
BEACON BATTERY COMPANY
TORONTO CANADA”

“FOR PENLIGHTS
SMALL LANTERNS, ETC.
PRINTED IN CANADA”

Stamped on these: “6-8”

On the Ray-O-Vac battery: “RAY-O-VAC CANADA LIMITED
WINNIPEG, MANITOBA
MADE IN CANADA”

“HIGHEST QUALITY”

“Penlight
BATTERY
No. 7R”

Dimensions (cm):

Each Battery: Length = 5, Diameter = 1.6

Function:

These small batteries provide electrical power to small electrical apparatus, such as a flashlight. They were likely removed from an object in the collection, but their affiliation is not obvious.

Condition:

Fair: The batteries are exhausted and quite light. The paper wrappers are dirty, but intact. The Beacon batteries have not leaked. The Ray-O-Vac batteries appear to have leaked slightly at both ends; the paper wrapper at both ends is stained black.

Manufacturer:

Beacon Battery Company; Ray-O-Vac Canada Limited

Date of Manufacture: 1930s

Provenance:

These batteries were likely removed from another object within the collection. They were moved from the David Dunlap Observatory in Richmond Hill in 2008, upon the sale of the observatory. It was stored at the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics until 2017, when it was moved to a new storage location in McLennan Physical Laboratories.