Scientific Instruments Exhibits at Kresge Library

Current Exhibit

There's An App for That (March 2017)
curated by the students of HIST63.01

“There's An App For That” recalls life before the iPhone with a collection of historical devices, each fulfilling one of many daily functions that we now hold in the palm of our hands. Some, like the Apple II, were groundbreaking inventions whose effects remain relevant to daily life; others, like the reflecting nephroscope, advanced science and technology but have since themselves become obsolete. Over time, many of these histories have been washed away by the tide of technology and subsumed into the iPhone, and many of these instruments you may not even recognize. However, we, the students of HIST63.01, present these artifacts not only to help us appreciate the conveniences of life in the age of the iPhone, but also to become aware of the vast histories that made them possible.View exhibit website


Past Exhibits

Mysteries of a Gold Pocket Watch PosterMysteries of a Gold Pocket Watch (May 2015)
curated by Jessica Goldstein '16

This exhibit uncovers mysteries behind a fancy pocket watch given to Dartmouth to memorialize a recent graduate who died in World War II. Come see this display of art, artifacts and history from the Hood and Rauner collections that expose the story behind this masterpiece. The exhibit is the product of Jessica’s research as a Presidential Scholar with Professor Richard Kremer.View exhibit poster





Lights Camera Science PosterLights, Camera, Science (March 2014)
curated by the members of ‘Reading Artifacts’ [CoCo 12]

The scientific instrument exhibit depicts the history of science education at Dartmouth. Come see our display of historic instruments used at Dartmouth, videos demonstrating the instruments in use, and replicas and hands-on activities that demonstrate the scientific principles behind the originals. View exhibit poster





Ghost of Dartmouth Eye Institute Past PosterGhost of Dartmouth Eye Institute Past (April 2013)
curated by Jingxi (Emily) Li '14

Renowned in the 1930s -40s as a first-class research center on vision and making optical instruments, the Dartmouth Eye Institute closed its doors not long after that, leaving behind the scientific curiosities shown in this exhibit.View exhibit poster





Charting the Universe PosterCharting the Universe: Instruments of Astronomy and Surveying in Dartmouth's King Collection (April 2012)
curated by Elizabeth Neill '12

This exhibit showcases the scientific instruments that contribute to our visual understanding of the universe. From a depiction of an armillary sphere from 16th century Italy to a Rand McNally globe from 1930s Boston, these objects draw a picture for the viewer over time of “charting the universe”… View exhibit poster





More Than Meets the Eye PosterMore Than Meets the Eye: The Turn to Mechanical Objectivity (September 2010)
curated by Do-Hee Kim '12

This exhibit offers a visual account of the transition to mechanical objectivity and its impact in the fields of anatomy, histology, physics and astronomy, ... . By comparing images before and after photography, the exhibit asks how a new technology shaped the values and practices of science. View exhibit poster





More Than Trial & Error posterMore Than Trial and Error: Dartmouth Students Enter the Laboratory (May 2010)
curated by Matt Forman ‘11

Facsimiles of Dartmouth student laboratory notebooks from the 1880s, along with the laboratory equipment and the textbooks that would have been used at that time, reveal a new approach to science education as students ventured into the "practical exercises" that would teach them about the natural world. View exhibit poster





The Spectacle of Science posterThe Spectacle of Science (October 2009)
curated by Laura Michet ‘11

This exhibit highlights instruments used for demonstrations of scientific principles in Dartmouth classrooms. Ranging from the orrery and the pulleys and gears purchased in 1785 to the Van de Graaff machine used in the 1950s, these apparatus illustrate the theatrical side of science pedagogy. View exhibit poster