Humboldt State University

Robert A. Paselk Scientific Instrument Museum

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Spencer Lens Co.

Humboldt S-T-C 2063; c.1935

(Manufactured 1923-25)

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The current specimen is typical of those used by high schools and introductory college courses in the third decade of the twentieth century. It was last used in the HSU Greenhouse, where it was kept for many years.

Note the transitional treatment of exposed metal parts: the traditional lacquering of bright metal parts above the stage, while the substage focusing knob and stage clips have a protective chrome plating.

Some contemporary/early descriptions of the microscope and its use are provided below:


The microscope stands 11 1/4" tall when closed. It is finished in black with exposed metal in lacquered brass. The knobs have dished surfaces with round knurled doubled ridges on the edges. There is no draw-tube in this low-cost, simplified microscope. The fine focus is graduated every 2.5 microns. There is a 10X ocular with conical mounting for the eyelens. There are two objectives on a revolving nosepiece (two engraved ::SPENCER LENS CO, BUFFALO, N.Y.:[/ :NUM. APER. 0.65:44X::4MM/283211]; 277531/16MM.N.A.0.25 10X]. The stage is 110x105mm square Bakelite. The substage is of the Spencer fork-type, with built-in iris diaphragm, which swings out for easy condenser cleaning and replacement. There is a 48mm plano-concave mirror on a swinging arm. The surface condition of the microscope is excellent. A serial number, 89599, is stamped on the frame above the focusing knobs. It has a HSTC number of 2063.

The mechanical stage is a later addition, probably installed after 1950.

HSTC Instrument Collection

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HSTC (1921-34)
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HSC (1935-1953)
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HSC (1954-1973)

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© R. Paselk
Last modified 6 September 2013