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I would like to acknowledge for myself and countless others, the help of the late Dr Brian Bracegirdle who, along with a few close friends, inspired me both directly and indirectly in my quest for knowledge of the history of the microscope. I first used one of his books, an Atlas of Histology, when I was a medical student in the 1970's. Many years later, when I became interested in the history of the microscope, Dr Bracegirdle's generosity with his time and his unique publications, assisted and inspired me as I strove to collect historical microscopes and slides. If it were not for him, I would never have been able to identify Dr Hodgkin as the original owner of James Smith's Microscope numbered 22. The thing that most stood out about him was his willingness to share all his extensive knowledge of this field, without the least hesitation. I hope I can live up to his legacy by publishing on this website as much information as feasible about the topics discussed, without holding back any relevant information that might prove useful to the users. Dr Bracegirdle passed away on December 16, 2015, aged 82, and will be missed by everyone acquainted with him.

This site, started in mid-2012, and first placed on the Internet in February of 2013, includes both original articles as well as pages on individual antiques associated with the history of science, and microscopy in particular. It is intended as a reference, and a resource, to those interested in historical science artifacts. It not only contains instruments still in my collection, but also some instruments formerly in my collection, especially if rare, unique or of special interest. It also now contains selected instruments from other collectors, who have generously offered to let me place share their instruments as well as my own. Not only are very old antiques included, but some more recent instruments if pertinent, unusually well made, or of interest for another reason. Since I use a microscope in my profession almost every day, this site reflects my varying interests. Please note this is a work-in-progress so certain parts of the site are not yet completed and will be upgraded as time permits. Because each piece is thoroughly researched, I anticipate it will take years to complete the site. As of December 2017, only about 85% of the microscopes are on the site, and even a smaller fraction of other instruments. I am trying to list the most interesting and important pieces as well as those not well-documented elsewhere first; please be patient as the site grows.

There are many original articles on this site, with information often not found elsewhere, please consult them. If there is a term you are not familiar with, or would like more information about, please try my GLOSSARY. If the term is not defined there, you can search the internet or send me an email for a request to add it to the glossary.

APPRAISALS & RELATED INFORMATION: If you have an instrument you have a question about, or a microscope you would like to sell or trade, please contact me. I am always willing to answer a question related to any light microscope of almost any age or type, to the best of my abilities. BUT PLEASE be aware that my knowledge and references for microscopes which date to after about 1935 or so is limited, and I may not be able to help with those.

USED AND NEW MICROSCOPES: Please also note that I am NOT a used or new microscope dealer and, with the exception of McArthur-type Microscopes, do NOT collect, buy or sell microscopes dating after the 1935 era. PLEASE DO NOT CONTACT ME ABOUT A POST-1940 MICROSCOPE UNLESS IT IS A McARTHUR TYPE.

Please note that I may be interested in buying instruments from before 1940 or so, so if you have one to sell please contact me at I will give you my honest opinion and, if I am interested in buying it, I will offer you a price I consider to be fair and reasonable at the time. If I do make you an offer, you are free to accept, decline, or counter my offer. Even if you are not interested in selling, I still welcome any reasonable inquiry, which I will respond to without charge, but please do not ask me to assess a large number of instruments, unless they are unusual, rare or you would like a paid professional appraisal. I would also be grateful for any additional information or illustrations you would be willing to share that might enhance the value of these pages. Please note that, being quite busy, I may not respond right away, so please be patient and I will get back to you.

Please be aware this is not a commercial site and the instruments pictured are generally not for sale, although some may have been sold in the past and are still listed on this site for their reference value. On rare occasions I may put an instrument up for sale, but not on this site. When I do sell, it is usually on or sometimes Ebay, though Ebay has become very expensive for sellers of late.

Note: I have a special interest in BULLOCH and WATSON Microscopes and may be interested in purchasing some examples regardless of condition, for a price commensurate with the value and condition. If you have a Bulloch microscope with a serial number and it is not listed in my Bulloch Serial Number Table, even if you are not interested in selling it, please be kind enough to send me any images of it you might have and its number so I can improve my documentation of this maker's work. I will credit you or keep you anonymous as you may wish.

Please note that this site includes many 'articles' which are original and not found elsewhere. Please note these, like the rest of the site are copyrighted, and may be freely used or linked but not reproduced without my permission.