4 1/2" Brashear reflector with Warner / Swasey mount
John A Brashear Telescope with Equatorial Mount
At the age of nine, John Brashear gazed at the heavens for the first time through a telescope, without knowing that he would eventually produce telescopes for colleges and universities everywhere. In his autobiography he later wrote, "I thought...how nice it would be if there were a telescope or place where the layman, boy or girl, could have a chance to look at the stars, the moon and planets, little dreaming that in my life I should have the opportunity to help bring this very miracle to pass." He and his wife Phoebe completed his first instrument in 1874. In a workshop behind his home, he continued to teach himself about the workings of telescopes and lenses, and built many designs. With financial backers he eventually built a larger workshop with better equipment and machinery and began designing and making lenses and building telescopes and spectroscopes for observatories in the United States and around the world.
Offered is a 4 ½-inch Brashear telescope in fine condition and fully functional. It was housed at the Camarillo Junior College until the early 1970's when Ron Oriti, formerly with the Griffith Observatory, bartered with the college, trading a new telescope which would be easier for the students to work with. The lens cell is in perfect condition and all collimating screws turn easily. The tube is free of damage and has been painted black. The Warner-Swasey Equatorial Mount works beautifully and the bearings and gears are tight. The rack-and-pinion focuser and focusing table are in fine condition.