Projector - Magic Lantern, 1890-1920 Object Reg. No: HT 25382

This metal projector was used to view slides. This optical lantern was possibly used in Melbourne, Victoria, at least at some stage as the projector box has a Victorian Railway sticker for Camberwell.

While the invention of the magic lantern is generally seen to be in the 17th century, its greatest popularity as an optical projector spans the late 18th Century to the early decades of the 20th Century. It was used both as a means of entertainment and education.
The projector is housed in a black, rusty metal box with a door at one end that opens from left to right. The original latch is missing but there is a new latch made from wire. There are two wire handles on top of the box. The projector consists of two main parts: the illuminant end and the projector end. The illuminant end has a latched door at the back to access the lamp housing and a door in each side with a circular window. There is a rectangular opening in the top of the illuminant housing. Inside the housing, there is a plate with a long nail (used as a handle) that can be slid out. There is also a rectangular chimney piece and a lens in a brass housing stored. There is a lens glass between the illuminant housing and the front part of the projector. The front part of the projector has two brass cylinders with a gap between them where the slides are placed. There is a ring of metal between the two cylinders with two missing springs and screws. There are remnant scraps of paper peeling front the front and side of the box with largely illegible text.
Discipline: Technology
Dimensions: 230 mm (Height), 160 mm (Width), 375 mm (Length)
Dimension Comment: Dimensions are for the metal box.

More information

Tagged with: projectors, magic lanterns, pre-cinema moving images, lantern projectors
Themes this item is part of: Images & Image Making Collection, Leisure Collection
Primary Classification: PHOTOGRAPHY
Secondary Classification: Image Viewing Equipment
Tertiary Classification: lantern projectors
Inscriptions: On scraps of paper (label stuck to outside of box):"VICTORIAN R[A]ILW.../CAMBERWELL"; "TICKET/BRIC...E/....all'
Date Made: 1890-1920


Jonathan Knowles Posted on 08 Mar 2012 11:09 PM
Appears to be an incomplete example of Walter Tyler's New Pattern "Helioscopic Lantern" Regd. No. 75681, 48-50 Waterloo Road, London SE. Manufactured between 1880-1912.

The Helioscopic was the best known lantern produced by the English lantern and slide manufacturer and retailer, Walter Clement Tyler. It went through various models. Tyler, who began as a lantern exhibitor, opened a shop in 115 Waterloo Road, London in 1885. This particular lantern dates between 1891-98. The business, Walter Tyler Ltd., became one of Britain's largest retailers of lanterns, slides and accessories. Walter Tyler died in 1909 but the company continued its operation.

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