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Curiosities

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  • Jean-Baptiste Charcot – Polar Explorer – Commemorative Bronze Medal – 1936

    Jean-Baptiste Charcot – Polar Explorer – Commemorative Bronze Medal – 1936

    Large commemorative medal to celebrate the life of Jean-Baptiste Auguste Etienne Charcot (1867-1936) struck by the French Mint, in 1936, under the auspices of Expeditions Polaires Francaises. Charcot Frances greatest polar explorer led two successful expeditions to the Antarctic during the Heroic era. He was a doctor and son of neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot.

    His first expedition from 1904-1907 in the Francais explored the west coast of Graham Land. This was followed by the 1908-1910 explorations in the Pourquoi-Pas? The subject of the edition offered here. Later he turned his attention to the North and made scientific explorations off Greenland and Svalbard again in the Porquois-Pas? He died when the ship was wrecked in a severe storm off the coast of Iceland in 1936.

    This substantial bronze medal, 67mm in diameter and weighing 150 gm celebrates his life. It was designed by E.M. Lindauer, with a bust after Paul Richer. Richer, an anatomical artist, was a colleague of Charcot’s father and worked with him in illustrating certain medical texts. Richer’s sculptures are found in museums around the world including the Musee d’Orsay.

    The medal carries a bust of J.B. Charcot on the front acknowledging Paul Richer and on reverse and image of the Pourquoi-Pas? Among icebergs with Expeditions Polaires Francaises above and the ships name below. Very good condition, if not fine condition, with very strong relief.

    An example of this medal sold as lot 79 in the Scott Amundsen Centenary Sale at Bonhams, London in 2012 for just short of A$2,500

    Special Antarctic Collectable Celebrates the life of J.B. Charcot

    $890.00

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  • Cathedral Galvanometer [Automatic Telephone Manufacturing Co Ltd] – 1915

    Cathedral Galvanometer [Automatic Telephone Manufacturing Co Ltd] – 1915

    A fully operational cathedral design galvanometer made the A.T.M. Co Ltd (Automatic Telephone Manufacturing Company). In good working order and very clean internally. 18cms high and heavy at 1.6 kgs so really only practically sent domestically in Australia.

    This is a single coil galvanometer no manufacturers markings but definitely a design by Liverpool England based A.T.M Co Ltd which was formed in 1911. We would date the instrument between then and 1920. A.T.M. Co Ltd made a significant contribution in WWI including making Crystal Radios for the Royal Flying Corps. It is certainly and early one as it has stop pins at the end of the scale on each side which were later abandoned. The needle sits perfectly vertical on a central zero when the galvanometer is aligned facing due north or south. Stamped with a 30 on the back which indicates a coil resistance of 30ohms. On the back there are 2 cheese head terminal screws. The instrument is used to accurately measure low DC voltages.

    Automatic postage allowance will not cover this item … but we will make up the difference!

    Nice early 20thC Telegraphic Cathedral Galvanometer

    $130.00

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  • A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder – James De Mille -1900

    A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder – James De Mille -1900

    Published by Harper, New York in 1900. A very good clean copy of this Utopian, Hollow Earth fantasy. By James De Mille and in true Jules Verne style.

    Octavo with original deep red cloth covered boards with black and gilt lettering and device. 291 pages, frontispiece of the author and seven plates.

    During a voyage in the yacht Falcon in 1850 a strange copper cylinder is retrieved from the Ocean. It contains the manuscript of Adam More of Keswick, Cumberland. His is an incredible tale. He was crewing on a vessel taking convicts to Van Dieman’s Land in 1843. On the return journey they went by Desolation Island where they were becalmed … venturing out to catch seal the got into all sorts of trouble and eventually found themselves in an unusual world with the Antarctic among strange people, strange creatures and strange goings on. Regarded as one of the best in the genre …

    From Hobart Town to the centre of the Antarctic and the people that live there

    $150.00

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  • Magic Lantern Slide – Cartographic Material – The Ross Dependency – Antarctica c1923 on Its Formation

    Magic Lantern Slide – Cartographic Material – The Ross Dependency – Antarctica c1923 on Its Formation

    An original magic lantern slide showing clearly the New Zealand Ross Dependency, by Newton & Co.

    The Ross Dependency takes its name from Sir James Clark Ross ho discovered the Ross Sea and Victoria Land in 1841 and claimed the region for Britain.

    The region is defined by a sector originating at the South Pole and passing along longitude 160 degrees east and 150 degrees east and stopping at latitude 60 degrees south.

    On 30th July 1923 an order was published in the Government Gazette of the Dominion of New Zealand that the region should be named the “Ross dependency”’ and that the Governor-General and Commander in Chief of New Zealand will be Governor of the Territory.

    Newton & Co were formed in 1858. In the period 1912-1925 they had premises in Covent Garden. S we are pretty sure that the slide comes from 1923 and was prepared for presentations concerning these changes.

    Standard size circa 3.5 inches or 8cm by 8cm.

    Historic Cartographic record – the formalisation of the Ross Dependency in the Antarctic

    $50.00

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  • Scott and his Party Preparing for the Pole – Magic Lantern Slide – c1913

    Scott and his Party Preparing for the Pole – Magic Lantern Slide – c1913

    An in the period coloured magic lantern slide … one of a scarce series depicting Scott preparing to leave with his team for the South Pole. In the background Amundsen is with his men likewise preparing to leave … a fiction of course as it didn’t happen like that .. and also with the dogs!.

    Some ageing but really good vibrant colours and portraying an important historic event … albeit with the aforementioned qualification.

    Standard size circa 3.5 inches or 8cm by 8cm.

    Robert Falcon Scott … a romantic view of his departure to the furthest south

    $90.00

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  • Photograph by B Sheppard – Spiky Bridge [Built by Convicts], Near Swansea, East Coast Road Tasmania

    Photograph by B Sheppard – Spiky Bridge [Built by Convicts], Near Swansea, East Coast Road Tasmania

    An original photograph by B (Benjamin) Sheppard (1902-1987). Size 21 x 16cm. Overall in good condition. Sheppard was most active in the 1950’s and the photograph likely cones from that period. The rear of the photograph carries B Sheppard’s stamp, that of the Agent General for Tasmania and a manuscript note identifying the location … a rather obvious one to those that love and live in the Apple Isle.

    You can still see the solid Spiky Bridge built by Convict labour in 1843. The road has been moved onto a more modern and rather boring structure. The spikiness is thought to be an invention to stop cattle falling into the water … maybe. If you go there the remain of the Governor’s cottage can be seen on the hill nearby.

    A Tasmanian landmark … Spiky Bridge a strange structure built by convicts

    $60.00

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