| || |
John F. Mascher
Report on J. F. Mascher's Stereoscope
Published in "Journal of the Franklin Institute of the State of Pennsylvania for the Promotion of the Mechanic Arts", March, 1855, p.214-215.
COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE AND THE ARTS.
Report on J. F. Mascher's Stereoscope.
The Committee on Science and the Arts, constituted by the Franklin Institute of the State of Pennsylvania, for the promotion of the Mechanic Arts, to whom was referred for examination, "an Improvement in Stereoscopes," invented by Mr. J. F. Mascher, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Report :
That the instrument submitted by Mr. Mascher, consists of a light lid or flap fitted into a case similar to those commonly used for daguerreotype pictures, and containing two lenses of short focus, and fitted to the view of any stereoscopic pictures fitted permanently or temporarily into the case. The advantages presented by this very neat apparatus of Mr. Mascher are; 1st, That from its simplicity it can be made much more cheaply than almost any other form of stereoscope; 2d, That when in action it allows the light to fall upon the pictures at any required angle, and in any desirable quantity, there being no solid sides to interfere with the arrangement of the light. In these two respects it shares its advantages with a light and cheap form of instrument which has been for several years in use. But, 3d, Mr. Mascher's instrument is very compact, the bent frame folding down into the case, thus allowing a stereoscope daguerreotype to be kept with its proper lenses in the same case that is used for ordinary pictures; and the mobility of the lens frame by its rocking motion on its hinge, gives very greatly increased facility for the arrangement of the focal distance to suit any eyes, and for the other adjustment of the lenses for distinct vision.
In reference to the originality of the invention, it is sufficient to say that Mr. Mascher has obtained Letters Patent for his invention, and of course, the only proper course to attack him on this point would be by taking means to obtain the decision of a court of law upon the point.
As this matter is not within the scope of the examinations of the Committee of Science and the Arts in such cases, they content themselves with recommending to general use, the stereoscope patented by Mr. Mascher, as being a very neat, cheap, durable, convenient, and easily adjusted instrument, superior, for ordinary purposes, to those forms commonly in use.
By order of the Committee,
Wm. Hamilton, Actuary.
Philadelphia, February 8th, 1855.
Since the adoption of the above report, Mr. Mascher has invented and submitted to the inspection of the members of the Institute, a stereoscope arranged in a locket of the usual form and size. The arrangement is illustrated by the accompanying wood-cut, and besides the convenience of the size and mode of preserving the pictures, the lenses are made more powerful than those of other stereoscopes, and the pictures are thus more highly magnified. Ed.