Cool Tools!

Banner, Cool Tools

The COOL TOOLS! exhibition showcased 19th and 20th century tools from the combined BCHS and Horner Museum artifact collections. Tools from the field, farm, laboratory, home, and workshop invoked wonder and appreciation from museum visitors of all ages. Visitors could see the tools that J.C. Avery used to survey and plat the land that became downtown Corvallis, Oregon. They could learn about Oregon's hop industry. They could see early inventions by Corvallis engineers from Hewlett Packard and Intelledex. Categories of tools in the exhibition included textile, wood, metal, engineering, food, and farm tools. Informative details about the tools emphasized Benton County stories and were available on touch-screen tablets or visitors' own portable devices. This exhibit closed November 1, 2014.

1.Engineering Theodolite2.Wood Sawblade 3.Gilman Keasey Drawknife 4.Farm Hop Basket 5.Textile Spinning Wheel 6.19th Century Wood Plane 7.J. C. Avery's drafting tools, Marysville, Corvallis, Oregon, USA 8.Textile Clock Reel 9.Engineering Intelledex Robot

1. 19th Century Oertling German Surveyor's Theodolite
2. Wood Sawblade
3. Gilman Keasey's Archery Production Tools
4. Hop Harvesting Basket
5. 19th Century Spinning Wheel
6. 19th Century Wood Plane
7. Drafting Set
8. Textile Clock Reel
9. Intelledex robot, Corvallis, Oregon, USA

Exhibit Categories

Woodworking Tools | Metalworking Tools | Textile Production | Farming and Food Production | Engineering | Whatchamacallit
 

Woodworking Tools: Logging

Woodworking Tools: Workshop

Caulk Boots

These spike-soled boots provide the logger with traction on the springboard. This pair was worn around 1950 by Melvin Hawkins, who with his brother owned Hawkins Logging in Philomath.

Wood Caulk Boots

Wood Caulk Boots

2003-119.0004

Logging Caulk boot

Logging Caulk Boot

Two-Man Crosscut Saw

Phil Fleischman cut firewood on his Kiger Island potato farm during the early 20th century with this two-handed crosscut saw. The straight back makes this a bucking saw, not a felling saw. The four teeth cut the wood; the forked raker removes the wood into the curve gullet, which then carries the shavings out of the log. The curved metal piece on the E.A. Atkins handle protects the fingers.

Whipsaw

Two-Man Crosscut Saw

Log Brand

Owners began marking their timber as early as colonial times. The early marks were simple designs cut with an ax. Later brands were pounded or burned onto the ends of logs.

In an era when most logs arrived at a sawmill by floating down a river, the log brand provided a way to identify and therefore pay the supplier. The brands also discouraged theft and aided in the return of stolen logs. Today Oregon requires branding of all logs transported by public highways, waterways, or railroads.

Log Brand

Log Brand

2013-

Log Dog

To float the cut timber down river to the mill, loggers create a raft by looping a chain around the logs and through log dogs pounded into the wood. This one came from Starker Forests.

Log Dog

Log Dog

1981-119.0003

Two-man Chain Saw

German engineer Andreas Stihl patented the first gasoline-powered chain saw in 1929. Early chain saws were heavy and required two people to operate. Using a power saw, a logging crew could produce about 6,200 feet per day compared to 4,400 feet for a crew of hand fallers. This saw was used by the Weyerhaeuser Company in Linn county.

Two-Man Chainsaw

Two-man Chain Saw

2003-097.0001

Pioneer AB Model Chain Saw

The development of aluminum alloys after World War II made it possible to produce light-weight chainsaws that could be operated by one person instead of two. The Industrial Engineering Company introduced the first successful one-man saw (dubbed the Beaver) in 1948. It later added this Pioneer model with a longer bar more suitable for cutting larger western trees.

Chain Saw

Pioneer AB Model Chain Saw

Industrial Engineering Ltd. 
Vancouver, Canada
1948-1950
1980-018.0001

Springboard

Because the curved grain of the wood at a tree's wide base was undesirable to sawmills, loggers avoided it by sawing off the trees above this level. To elevate themselves, loggers made springboards by attaching a steel end piece to a plank of wood. Inserted into a notch in the tree, the curved end gripped the tree and held up the board. This springboard was made and used by Perry Spencer of Alsea.

Springboard

Springboard

1980-001.0053

Undercutter

According to the donor, [this tool was] …"used by saw-log buckers on uneven ground to saw from the underside of the log. They would place the saw upside down in a groove on the rollers of the 'under-cutter' and saw up. This prevented the sway in the log from pinching the saw."

Undercutter

Undercutter

1980-001.0060

Draw Knife

Woodworkers use draw knives to shave off excess wood. By raising or lowering the handles while drawing the knife towards him perpendicular to the grain of the wood, the woodworker can create a complex curve. Gilman Keasey used this knife, which he inherited from his father, to shape archery bows.

Draw Knife

Draw Knife

2001-070.0016

Drill Press Model 102-3

Wall-mounted drill presses were used by both woodworkers and metal workers, including blacksmiths. They offered several advantages over hand drills: the piece in which the hole was to be drilled could be securely anchored to the table, the drill was fixed in a perpendicular position for more accurate drilling, and the crank and gears meant less effort was required.

Metal Drill Press

Champion Blower and Forge Company

Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Circa 1900

Dado Plane

In order to cut a trench across a piece of wood (perhaps to insert a shelf), the woodworker would use a dado plane. The screw adjusts a guide that regulates the depth of the dado. The vertical iron piece is U-shaped to score the wood before the angled blade shaves off the excess wood. The hole is for the woodworker's thumb.

Dado Plane

Dado Plane

1991-034.0066

Molding Plane

To create the rounded and grooved shape for a decorative molding, the woodworker would use a molding plane with a curved blade of the desired shape. Looking sideways at the bottom of this plane, you can see what the finished molding would look like. A professional woodworker might have many different molding planes.

Molding Plane

Molding Plane

1986-003.0001

Plow Plane

To cut a groove the length of a board, a woodworker would use a plow plane. The metal screw on top sets the depth of the cut. The user than adjusts how far the cut is from the edge of the board by turning the wood screws to move the side piece in or out. This plane dates from around 1820 and was used by the donor'’s grandfather.

Plow Plane

Plow Plane

H15172

Fret Saw

The Millers Falls Company began making Rogers treadle saws in 1878 and introduced this model a year later. Selling for $3-4, it was very popular with home woodworkers who used it to create decorative scrollwork. The treadle powered a thin, vertical saw blade (missing) that cut through the wood resting on the circular plate.

Wood Fret Saw

New Rogers Fret Saw

Millers Falls Company
Millers Falls, Massachusetts
H1881-016-0013

Sawblade

Benjamin Fanning Cutler (1829-1908) owned and operated several steam sawmills in the Willamette Valley during the 1850s and 1860s. Cutler used this cutoff sawblade at the first steam sawmill at Marysville (Corvallis) and later at Brownsville.

Sawblade

Sawblade

H14041

Spoke Shave

Using a double spoke shave, the chair maker could quickly shape legs having both curved and straight sections. Single spoke shaves were used to make wheel spokes, paddles, and bows and arrows.

Spoke Shave

Spoke Shave

1989-057.0168

Tackhammer

This small hammer would have been used by an upholsterer or a carpet layer. The user picked up small tacks with the magnetized split end and then used the cylindrical portion to pound them in. Today, upholsterers use staple guns instead.

Tackhammer

Tackhammer

1989-057.0172

Metalworking Tools

Anvil

The anvil is a blacksmith's workbench--it serves as a base for forming the iron. The flat top is used for the basic shaping and the edge for creating bevels or right angles. The hole in the top (known as a hardy or hardie hole) anchors shaping tools, such as a chisel or a bottom swage, which are used to create specific shapes. The pointed end, known as the horn or beak, is where the blacksmith bends iron into rounded curves.

Blacksmith's Anvil

Metal Anvil (2)

Blacksmith's Anvil

1997-026.0001

Drill Press

Wall-mounted drill presses were used by both woodworkers and metal workers, including blacksmiths. They offered several advantages over hand drills: the piece in which the hole was to be drilled could be securely anchored to the table, the drill was fixed in a perpendicular position for more accurate drilling, and the crank and gears meant less effort was required.

Metal Drill Press

Drill Press Model 102-3

Champion Blower and Forge Company
Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Circa 1900
H1990-032-0001

Horseshoe

This oddly shaped horseshoe was fashioned by old-time Alsea blacksmith, Henry Daly. One of Eldon Bowen's horses became lame after an injury that left her foot deformed. Daly, who had spent five years as an apprentice blacksmith in the German cavalry, reshaped the foot and then made this special horseshoe. Afterwards, the filly was able to walk normally and carried Bowen on his 40-mile mail route.

Metal Orthopaedic Horseshoe

Horseshoe

1980-001.0032.05

Pickup Tongs

Corvallis blacksmith Nick Lunde would have used these tongs to pick up a large round piece of iron to heat it, and also to hold a piece while hammering it into the desired shape. He would have had many different tongs to tightly grip pieces of iron of different sizes and shapes.

Nick Lunde’'s blacksmith shop was located on South 2nd Street in Corvallis until the late 1930s. Blacksmiths were important members of any community, because they created or sharpened tools, formed useful household products, and made horseshoes, gates, and weapons.

Metal Pickup Tongs

Pickup Tongs

1981-138.0001

Square Flatter

Corvallis blacksmith Nick Lunde would have placed this tool on the metal and hit it with his hammer to smooth out bumps and hammer marks in the finished product. The wood handle is hand made, as was typical of tools at that time.

Nick Lunde’'s blacksmith shop was located on South 2nd Street in Corvallis until the late 1930s. Blacksmiths were important members of any community, because they created or sharpened tools, formed useful household products, and made horseshoes, gates, and weapons.

Blacksmith's Square Flatter

Blacksmith's Square Flatter

1981-138.0012

Round Punch

A blacksmith uses punches of different shapes to create holes in a piece of metal by hammering on the end. The blacksmith who made this tool needed an oval punch to make the hole for the handle.

Metal Round Punch

Round Punch

1981-138.001

Bottom Swage

A bottom swage fits into the square hole on an anvil. The hot metal is placed in it and worked to create a nice round finished shape.

Bottom Swage

Bottom Swage

2007-042.0010

Top Swage

A top swage is used with a bottom swage to create a rounded surface. An assistant would hold the top swage in place while the blacksmith hammered it to create the desired shape.

Top Swage

Top Swage

1981-138.0013

Wrench

A farmer would have used an "S" wrench while working on tractors or other farm equipment.

Wrench

1980-001.0081

Wrench

A blacksmith made this large wrench by hand. It might have been used in bridge construction.

Metal Wrench

Wrench

1981-138.0017

Alligator Wrench

In the past, nuts used to fasten bolts were square instead of hexagonal. The alligator wrench is named for its resemblance to the open mouth of an alligator. The serrations help grip square nuts or pipes and other round objects. The blunt tip on one end could be used as a screwdriver and the middle holes as thread-cutting dies. The Hawkeye Wrench Company of Marshalltown, Iowa, made this wrench based on a 1903 patent by Charles Benesh.

Alligator Wrench

Alligator Wrench

1992-007.1303

Textile Production Tools

Clock Reel

Once the spinner had spun the yarn, she needed to measure out the appropriate length to take to the weaver. To do so, she, or more likely one of the children, attached the yarn to one of the spokes on the reel. Each turn of the reel wound 2 yards of yarn onto the device and moved the clock-like gear one turn. After 40 turns, the pegs on the gear would force the long, slender piece of wood (known as a weasel) to bend, then snap back into place. That sound alerted the winder that the reel now contained one skein. It also gave us the song "Pop Goes the Weasel."

Clock Reel

Clock Reel

H14458

Clock Reel

Clock Reel (2)

Clock Reel

H14458

Hand Card

To separate and straighten fibers before spinning, the wool was laid across one of the cards. Stroking gently across the surface with the other card pulled the fibers through the metal teeth. After several passes, the fibers were separate and straight and could be rolled off into an airy bat that was ready for spinning. The L.S. Watson Company was founded in 1842 in Leicester, Massachusetts, a center for the manufacture of cards.

Hand Card

Hand Card

1992-007.0051

Hand Punch

National champion archer Gilman Keasey made the small leather finger guard in his Corvallis archery supply business, circa 1935. He used this punch like a cookie cutter to make the shape of the finger guard.

Wood or Leather Hand Punch

Hand Punch

2001-070.0011

Hatchel

After soaking off the outer skin of the flax plant, the spinner combed through the remaining fibers with a series of hatchels. This removed any remaining debris and straightened the fibers for spinning into linen thread.

Textile Hatchel

Hatchel

1992-007.0950

Leather Archery Finger Guard

National champion archer Gilman Keasey made the small leather finger guard in his Corvallis archery supply business, circa 1935. He used a punch like a cookie cutter to make the shape of the finger guard.

Leather Finger Guard

Leather Archery Finger Guard

2001-070.0005

Loom

This vertical loom was made in Denmark over 100 years ago. Corvallis resident Tove Bodvarsson used it to weave rugs.

Vertical Loom

Loom

1993-113.0044

Maul

National champion archer Gilman Keasey used this 3-pound Goddard’s maul wrapped with rawhide to strike the punch when cutting out blank finger guards.

Wood and Leather Maul

Maul

2001-070.0012

Metal Name Stamp

National champion archer Gilman Keasey used this stamp, originally belonging to his father, E.W., to stamp his name on the leather finger and arm guards he made.

Metal Name Stamp

Metal Name Stamp

2001-070.0013

Niddy Noddy

Spinners used this simple, hand-held alternative to the clock reel to form skeins of finished yarn. Using her thumb to hold one end in the middle, the spinner wound the yard over the end of one cross bar, under the opposite end of the other, and so on, forming two triangles of yarn. The twist of her wrist as she did so imparted a bobbing or nodding motion to the tool. The work traditionally was done to a song that began, "Niddy noddy, niddy noddy, two heads and one body."

Niddy Noddy

Niddy Noddy

1992-007.0849

Rug Hook

The rug shuttle adds some mechanization to the task of hooking rugs. The user threads the strip of wool or other fabric through the eye. Holding the tool vertically to the backing fabric (burlap or linen), the rug maker slides one half of the wood body back and forth while holding the other half stationary. This forces the needle in and out of the backing, making the even loops of a hooked rug.

Rug Hook

Rug Hook

1991-119.0177

Sheep Shears

To collect wool, the fleece must first be cut off the animal. Squeezing the shears like a pair of scissors, the shearer cuts off the wool in one piece. Machine shearing was introduced in the late 1880s and had replaced hand shearing in most places by the 1940s. In colder climates, some still use hand shears because this method leaves more wool on the animal, giving it more protection from the elements.

Sheep Shears

Sheep Shears

1992-007.1243

Skiving Machine

The machine contains a blade to pare off a thin layer from the leather. Skiving is done to make the leather easier to fold and to reduce bulkiness in the seams. It is also used to bevel edges.

Skiving Machine

Skiving Machine

2001-056.0019

Spindle

People have used spindles for thousands of years, with examples found in archeological digs throughout the world. A leader thread is attached to the spindle and then carried up over the disc, or whorl, and attached to the batt of wool or other fiber. The spindle is rolled along one’'s thigh, then let drop as the fibers are drawn out. The resulting twisted thread is then wound on the long spindle and the process repeated. This spindle was used by Corvallis weaver Tove Bodvarsson.

Yarn Spindle

Spindle

1993-113.0019

Spinning Wheel

Julia P. Carlson of Seaside, Oregon, donated this spinning wheel to the Horner museum in 1943. Carlson immigrated to the United States from Denmark in 1887. The maker’'s mark underneath the wheel indicates that it was made in Aalborg, Denmark.

Spinning Wheel

Spinning Wheel

H09122

Walking Spinning Wheel

The walking or great wheel is the oldest type of spinning wheel. The fiber is attached to the spindle. Then one walks backward, turning the wheel with the right hand while pulling the batt of wool out an angle to the spindle with the left hand. After the resulting thread is wound on the spindle, the process is repeated. This spinning wheel was used in Kings Valley, Oregon around 1850.

Walking Spinning Wheel

Walking Spinning Wheel

Kings Valley, Oregon
Jack E. and Be Davison Herrera Collection
2011-041.0001

Tjanting Wax Applicator

​Indonesians use this tool to make batik fabric. After putting hot wax into the copper receptacle, they draw on the design using the small spout. The wax hardens and keeps the dye from coloring that section of the fabric.

Tjanting

Tjanting Wax Applicator

H1985-082-0021&-22

Warping Reel

This warping reel was handmade in Allamakee County, Iowa, in 1890, for winding home-spun woolen yarn.

Warping Reel

Warping Reel

H1382

Wool Blanket

The wool for this blanket came from sheep raised by W.N. Bodkin. His wife Nancy carded the wool and wove it into a blanket in 1860. This is a piece of that blanket.

Wool blanket

Wool Blanket

1991-034.0027

Farming and Food Production Tools

Brewing

Bottle Capper

The donors used this tool to cap bottles of homemade root beer.

Bottle Capper

Bottle Capper

1989-074.0313A-B

 

Hop Basket

Joseph Earl Krauger (1895-1950) started the J.E. Krauger Hop Basket Company at 1025 N. Commercial St., Salem, Oregon, during the late 1920s.

Hop Basket

Hop Basket

H1990-056-0001

 

Hop Harvesting

Hop Harvesting

 

Hop Harvesting Tools

James Alva Byers (1906-1982) of Salem, Oregon, worked as a hops broker through the mid-20th century. He worked for T.A. Livesly and later for Williams & Hart hops contractors. Byers' leather tool case contained hops broker's tools, including row crop harvest knives, bag hooks, flax string, an awl, a sacking needle, a fork-auger tool, a marking crayon, and 55 stencils, ink, and stencil brushes.

Hop Harvesting Tool Case

Hop Harvesting Tool Case

H1990-076-0003

Hop Blade

Hop Blade

Hop Tongs

Hop Tongs

 

Farming

Fruit Press

Gregory Reiling’s 19th century cider press was used at the "Prune Ranch" located west of Alpine, Oregon. The Reilings leased the 200 acre farm from the Wilhelm family for farming prunes, apples, and Angora goats.

Cider Press

Oasis Special No. 0. #181 Fruit Press

2004-005.0001

Harrow

During difficult times, or on the frontier, people often needed to make their own tools. The nails that an area farmer drove into the slab of wood would break up clods of dirt to help level out the field before planting. The log on top added weight. Factory-manufactured harrows have a similar design but are made entirely of metal.

Handmade Harrow

H1983-024-0002

Cultivator (2)

Handmade Harrow (Side View)

Handmade Cultivator (3)

Handmade Harrow, with View of Ropes

Lawn Mower

As people moved to suburban homes with grassy lawns, they sought ways to keep the grass short without the labor of using a scythe. Patented in 1923, the Monta mower used gears that rotated as it was pushed to turn a series of metal disks that cut the grass. The company promoted the mowers as trimming the edges at the same time. Because these mowers didn'’t work as well as other types of lawn mowers, the company went out of business in 1962.

Lawn Mower

Monta Lawn Mower
Montamower Distributing Company
Grand Rapids, Michigan
1941-1950
H1987-012-0001

Lawnmower BladesLawnmower Wheels

Dairy

Milk Tester

In 1890, S.M. Babcock invented an easy way to test the fat content of milk. Equal amounts of milk and sulfuric acid were mixed in special glass tubes with graduated necks and then spun. As the acid digested the other parts, the fat would rise in the neck. Thin-necked tubes were for testing regular milk and tubes with larger necks were used for testing cream. The use of milk testers helped the farmer evaluate cows and feed and deterred watering down milk sold to creameries.

Milk Tester

Milk Tester

1991-034.0043A

 

Distilling

Caitlin Prueitt, who has a degree in fermentation science from Oregon State University, opened Vivacity Spirits in 2011 with her husband Chris Neumann. They used hand-gathered Oregon Grape and juniper from the Cascades in making their Native Gin, a 2013 gold medal winner. Chris sands each wood stopper, burns the logo onto each, and assembles each stopper by hand.

Vivacity Gin Bottle

Vivacity Gin Bottle

Vivacity Spirits Labels

Vivacity Spirits Labels

 

Miniature Stills

A museum supporter brought these miniature stills to the Horner Museum in 1944.

Small Still

Small Still

H09261

Small Still (2)

Small Still

 

Moonshine Still

The written history that came to the museum with this still indicates that it was used during prohibition (1920-1933) to make "moonshine" and that the distiller's wife delivered the moonshine to the Kings Valley store in the bottom of her egg basket. "Jim made the best moonshine in the county and everybody knew it!"

Moonshine Still

Moonshine Still

2007-042.0001A

 

Whiskey Bottle

The 4 Spirits Distillery is dedicated to the memory of four Oregon National Guard soldiers who lost their lives while serving in Iraq in 2004. A portion of the proceeds goes to help Oregon veterans of foreign wars and their families.

4 Spirits Whiskey Bottle

Whiskey Bottle

2012-081.0001

 

More Farming Tools

Plow

Introduced by Deere in 1837, steel plows were quickly adopted by farmers tilling the sticky soils of the Midwest. In 1853, blacksmith William Parlin joined with his brother-in-law, William Orendorff, to make steel plows and later the many other farm implements Parlin designed. By 1919, when the company was sold to International Harvester, it was the largest maker of plows in the country.

Farm/Garden Plow

Garden Plow

Parlin and Orendorff
Canton, Illinois
H15573

Cradle Scythe

Using a grain cradle, a farmer could harvest about 2 acres of wheat per day, instead of the half-acre possible with a sickle. Cradles also gathered the wheat as it was cut, making it easier to rake up. This one was used in the Alsea area until 1872, when Tom Hayden and John McCormack purchased two of the latest horse-drawn reapers.

Cradle Scythe

Cradle Scythe

1980-001.0003

Engineering Tools

Abacus

Many cultures around the world developed some type of counting device that used pebbles, beads, or other small items in grooves or strung on wires or rods. This abacus follows the Chinese style of 5 beads (each with a value of 1) below the bar and two beads (each representing 5) above the bar. The number seven would be shown as one of the upper beads (5) lowered to the bar and two of the lower beads pushed up to it. (5 + 2 =7). Pushing up an additional two beads brings the total to 9 (7 + 2 = 9). To add 7 + 3, one would push up one of the lower beads in the next column to the left and move the other beads back away from the bar. (10 + 0). A skilled user can make calculations quite quickly. As a result, people throughout much of the world, especially those areas without reliable electricity, still use abaci in business and education.

Abacus

Abacus

Circa 1937
H1991-049-0005

Adding Machine

Although the idea for a mechanical calculator is attributed to Blaise Pascal in 1642, they did not enter everyday use until after the Burroughs Company began producing adding machines in 1892. The user enters a number by pressing keys and cranking the handle to rotate internal gears. Entering a second number rotates them further. Pressing the total key causes the machine to print out the answer. This machine was used in Jeff's Super Service Texaco Station in Corvallis.

Adding Machine

Adding Machine

Burroughs Adding Machine Company
Detroit
Circa 1935
1980-30.0064

Altimeter

Air pressure is less the higher one is above sea level and greater the deeper one descends below. Altimeters measure these pressure differences and translate them into a measure of altitude (measured counterclockwise) or depth below ground (measured clockwise). Aneroid altimeters use movements of sensitive diaphragms instead changes in the height of a column of mercury to measure the changes in pressure.

Oregon State University cadets (ROTC) presented this to their leader, U. S. McAlexander "in remembrance of our Seattle trip" in 1909. McAlexander went on to become a World War I hero for his leadership in the second battle of the Marne.

Altimeter

Altimeter and Case

Short and Mason, London
Circa 1909
H1879-036-0053

 

Chain Splicer

Surveyors used this tool to repair broken surveying chains.

Chain Splicer

Chain Splicer

Vermont
Circa 1900
H1983-026-0007

 

Drafting Set

Oregon pioneer Joseph C. Avery (1817-1876) used this drafting set to lay out the town of Marysville (Corvallis) in 1851.

J.C. Avery moved to Oregon in 1845 with 25 head of cattle. After exploring the western side of the Willamette Valley, he staked out a 640-acre provisional land claim where the Marys River enters the Willamette River. Part of this land today is Avery Park.

Drafting Set

Drafting Set

H00913-001A-S

 

HP ThinkJet Printer

The Hewlett-Packard ThinkJet personal printer (thermal inkjet) was introduced in 1984 and was the first mass-marketed personal inkjet printer. It replaced the noisier serial dot-matrix printers. The printer has tracks to accommodate continuous feed (fanfold) paper but could also be used for standard sheet paper.

HP Thinkjet Printer

HP ThinkJet Printer

1979-779.0007
 

Sextant

Sextants measure the angle between two objects, especially between the sun or a star and the horizon. Navigators use this measure to determine their latitude or the distance off shore from some visible landmark such as a lighthouse.

This sextant belonged to George D. Merrill (1925-1985) who graduated from the California Maritime Academy in 1950. He used it on ships carrying lumber from St. Helens to ports along the west coast for Pope and Talbot. Later he captained ships for the Moore-McCormack Lines on 90-day voyages along the west coast, through the Panama Canal to ports in South America, and through the Straits of Magellan to the company's home port of San Francisco.

Sextant

Sextant

DeKoningh Company
Arnhem, Amsterdam
H1985-063-0001

 

Slide Rule

Invented in the 1600s, slide rules evolved into their modern form in the 1850s. Engineers and others used them for multiplication and division and calculations using logarithms and trigonometric functions until the advent of electronic scientific calculators in the 1970s. This large one was using in teaching OSU students.

To multiply numbers such as 2 x 3, align 1 on the B scale on the middle (sliding bar) below 2 on the upper bar (A). The answer (6) is the number opposite the middle bar 3.

Pickett Slide Rule

Pickett Slide Rule

H1980-037-0040

 

Surveyor's Chains

Oregon pioneer Joseph C. Avery (1817-1876) used these surveyor's chains to measure and lay out the town of Marysville (Corvallis) in 1851.

J.C. Avery moved to Oregon in 1845 with 25 head of cattle. After exploring the western side of the Willamette Valley, he staked out a 640-acre provisional land claim where the Marys River enters the Willamette River. Part of this land today is Avery Park.

Surveyor's Chains

Surveyor's Chains

H00913-002

 

Theodolite

The theodolite is a predecessor to modern transit instruments used for land surveying. It measures horizontal and vertical angles.

Oregon Agricultural College researcher Dr. W.W. Weniger acquired this U.S. government surplus theodolite from the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey circa 1925. August Oertling’s company made this theodolite for the survey of the Great Lakes in 1867. Tools used to survey the shoreline included the compass, theodolite, and surveyors chains.

"The triangulation of Lake Superior was much retarded by the lack of suitable instruments. In September 1865, General Raynolds made a requisition for three large theodolites. These were ordered by the Engineer Department from Oertling & Sons, of Berlin, but were not received at Detroit until the spring of 1869. They were used on Lake Superior during that season. They had 20-inch horizontal limbs, read by three microscopes to single seconds." - Historical Account of the United States Lake Survey, 1882

The clear acrylic parts are replica replacements for pieces lost years ago.

Theodolite

Theodolite

H1986-070-0001

Raynolds Lake Superior Survey Chart

Gen. Raynolds' Lake Superior Survey Chart

Calculator

Introduced in 1972, the model 35 was the first pocket-sized scientific calculator. Named for its 35 keys, this calculator could do complex calculations using logarithms, exponents, and trigonometric functions. Engineers found it more accurate and useful than their slide rules, so in one year, HP sold over 100,000 units, in spite of an initial price of $395 (over $2,000 today).

HP 35 Calculator

Hewlett Packard Calculator

Model 35
1973
2002-100.0005A

HP 35 Owner's Manual

HP 35 Calculator Owner's Manual

HP 35 Manual Introduction

HP 35 Owner's Manual Introduction

HP 35 Calculator Sales Receipt

HP 35 Calculator Sales Receipt

 

Robot

"Darth Vader," as this robot was affectionately known at Intelledex, was the second prototype robot built by Intelledex engineers. The Intelledex Corporation, which began in Corvallis in 1981, supplied robotics for the electronics industry throughout the 1980s, and closed in 1991.

The prototype robot, which received commands from an Apple II computer, demonstrated the technical capabilities of Intelledex products for light assembly and was used to attract investors and new customers. The next generations of Intelledex robots were used to assemble electronics, such as automotive ignitions, computer hard drives, and semi-conductors.

Intelledex Robot

Intelledex Robot (2)

 

Intelledex Robot

H1992-014-0001

 

Thacher's Calculating Instrument

Edwin Thacher patented this cylindrical slide rule in 1881. The cylinder allowed him to make the scales longer, and then split them up over several rows, making this instrument accurate to 4 or 5 places. It was expensive; the model II, made between 1901 and 1927, cost between $35 to $70. And, unfortunately, Keuffel and Esser misspelled Thacher's name on the label.

The donor'’s grandfather was a founder of another slide rule maker, the Pickett and Eckel company.

Thacher's Slide Rule

Thacher's Slide Rule (2)

Tha[t[cher Label

Thacher's Calculating Instrument

Model 4012 Type II
Keuffel and Esser Company
Circa 1924
1985-042.0001A

 

Transit

This instrument is used by land surveyors to measure horizontal and vertical angles.

Transit

Transit

Stackpole and Brothers
NewYork
1867
H1893-005-0003

Whatchamacallit

Mystery Object

Mystery Object

Unidentified

1984-006.0003

More Views of the Mystery Object

Mystery Object (2)

Mystery Object (3)