Civil War “Rifle Telescope” - Inventory Number: MIS 182
A rifle marksman's telescope, "Steward's Improved Rifle Telescope", no 91, in leather-bound German silver, having a 1-inch objective lens with cover and extending shade, with two draws, one graduated at 1000 yards, the ocular having a sliding shutter, the body tube bearing an engraved plaque and one other, vacant, together with brackets for a tripod mount, 27 cm closed, 43 cm extended.
In 1862 at a Gloucester Rifle Association meeting an "improved rifle telescope handsomely mounted in German silver, with a tripod stand to match, value five guineas" made by Steward was offered as a prize. The Bristol Mercury reported that Steward had a tent with a large collection of telescopic glasses of every description at a rifle competition in Bristol in 1863. By the mid-1860s Steward was advertising himself as "Optician to the National Rifle Association."
James Henry Steward established his optical, scientific, military and surveying instrument business in London in 1852, becoming optician to Her Majesty's Government and the National Rifle, and National Artillery Associations, he died in 1896.
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Inventory Number: MIS 182