Modern Telescopes and Observatories

In addition to building the largest collection of historical American telescopes (including  63 telescopes and 200 other pieces of equipment now at the South Carolina State Museum), Robert Ariail also collected reference works and catalogs that illustrate the development and proliferation of astronomical equipment. Below are selected images from Claude Siméon Passemant’s Construction d’un telescope de réflexion de seize pouces de longueur (1738), which explains the details of Passemant’s reflecting telescope and serves as a companion to a 1730 telescope from the Ariail collection, as well as the General Catalogue of Instruments Made by Troughton & Simms, Opticians (1880) and A Few Astronomical Instruments: From the Works of Warner & Swasey, Cleveland, Ohio (1900), each of which highlight the advancement of astronomical instruments over the 19th century.