Henry Crouch Binocular Compound Microscope (No. 223)

Age:  1870
Made by: Henry Crouch
Made in: England

This binocular compound microscope is a fine example of the "medical student" microscope of the English instrument maker Henry Crouch. It is nominally a monocular microscope, but the addition of a second body tube, eyepiece, and Wenham prism transforms this instrument into a binocular microscope (for low magnification). It is constructed of brass with the body tube(s) supported via a Lister Limb (curved support) to a compass joint at the connection with the base. It is signed on the body "James W. Queen & Co., Agents; Philadelphia & New York", and on the base "Henry Crouch, London 1005". Queen and Company was an American dealer for a number of microscope makers (including, of course, Henry Crouch) and later (1880s) a manufacturer of their own brand of microscopes.

The brass claw-footed base has a black lacquered finish ("japanned") and is hinged to allow the microscope to be tilted to a horizontal position. The plano-concave illuminating mirror is mounted on an articulating arm, itself mounted to a brass tube descending from the body support. Light from the mirror is attenuated via circular stops machined into removable plates attached to the bottom of the condenser. The condenser has no lens elements. There are four objectives with the microscope that screw individually into the nosepiece at the base of the main body tube. The objectives each consist of two lens elements. Objective focal length ranges from 2" to 1/12". Coarse focus is via rack-and-pinion. Fine focus is actuated by a thumbwheel/lever assembly in front of the nosepiece. There are also two sets of Huygenian eyepieces, each with two lens elements. The circular stage has a black glass top surface upon which slides either a graduated circular specimen holder (for PLM applications) or a glass plate supporting two pressure clips. Imaging of this instrument are very good. The instrument and accessories fit into a mahogany case. The microscope is approximately 41cm tall and 15cm wide. Accessories include a free-standing Bullseye illuminator (lens missing) and two aquatic slides.

This microscope is similar to specimen #142 in the Billings Collection and #100 in the RMS Collection.

See the James W. Queen catalog from 1880 listing the Crouch "New Histological Microscope" for $75.

Microscope featured 3/06, 09/16

Wed, Aug 31, 2016