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A wooden box with a rotating semi-translucent piece on one end (shaped like an elbow joint) for light to enter. Around the mirrored piece is a dial for measuring the precise angle it sits at. Contains two variable resistors connected to a light bulb to adjust its luminosity. Lens/eyepiece protrudes from the box on the left side of the front face. A knob on the ‘front’ adjusts the distance of the light bulb from the eyepiece. A logarithmic scale is written on the front face of the box. On the opposite end of the mirrored elbow is a switch and four terminals. On the top of the box is a liquid leveling device. Immediate underneath the level, inside the box is set of mirrors to combine exterior and interior light and redirect it into the eyepiece. The light seen through the eyepiece can be adjusted by a switch above the mirrors. A semi-translucent glass plate is held between the interior light source and the mirrors.

Accession Number:

Alternative Name:

Primary Materials: Wood, Metal, Glass


Inside, under the switch, is a label reading “SHARP-MILLAR PHOTOMETER”, “No. 317”, “SHOPS OF FOOTE, PIERSON & CO. N.Y.”. On the front of the box is a metal label reading “TYPE _____, SERIAL NO. 817, PATENT NO. 960-420, Foote-Peirson & Co., 160-162 Duane St., New York.”

Dimensions (cm): Length = 70, Width = 20, Height = 15


Measuring an unknown light source by comparison to a known internal one.


Associated Instruments:


Foote Pierson & Co. / Sharp-Millar, New York.

Date of Manufacture: c. 1910


Additional Information and References:

Historical Notes: