Antiques & Collectibles » Science and Medicine » Antique Merry Optical Co. Traveling Eyeglass Optometrist Set

Antique Merry Optical Co. Traveling Eyeglass Optometrist Set

You are looking at one of the most unique and complete optometrists traveling prescription eye glass sets I’ve ever seen. The set appears to be amazingly compete with many lenses, eyeglass lense holder, a few eye glass frames, a piece that resembles a geometric compass, and several pieces of documentation and guides from the Merry Optical Company, Bay State Optical Company, and S&S Jewelry Optical Company. I believe the set was indeed manufactured by the Merry Optical Company in the early/around 1920’s, although this is just a guess. I base this on the fact that most of the documentation is indeed from the Merry Optical Company. The first tray has an amazing assortment of over 250 lenses (Spherical Concave, Cylindrical Concave, Cylindrical Convex, and Spherical Convex) in graduating strengths. All lenses are separated in felt compartments that protect each lense labeled with specific numbers. An amazing display by itself with absolutely no lenses missing on the first tray! Underneath the tray are additional lenses (approximately 100 more) with additional tweezers, eyeglass frames, price lists and order forms. There is also an empty case for a “Loring Ophthalmoscope” but the scope does not appear to be included. This is all neatly packed and displayed in a lockable leather carrying case, measuring 21 ½” x 12 ½”.

As for condition, the lenses all need to be cleaned, as they are all dusty and some of the edges have surface rust. A few of the lenses have rust all around the metal frame, but most of them just have spots of rust. The condition of the lenses are hard to determine as I have not cleaned them and do not intend to. Upon inspection, they look as though most would clean up nicely, however it’s hard for me to determine. It’s obvious that this has been in storage for many years and these lenses have been neglected and not been cared for. Having said that, I consider the condition yet to be very good, as they have continued to be stored in the carrying case. The lenses below the tray, are again all dusty, and based on how they are stored – in a paper grooves, it’s probable that these lenses are slightly moreso scratched from the dust and placement into these paper grooves. Most of the lenses have numbers with corresponding numerical values on it. The condition of the lenses appear fine though, just very dusty and need a very good cleaning. The tweezers, and documentation are very nice also. The leather case for the Loring Ophthalmoscope is has the top ripped off, and as I said is missing the scope. Another great part of this set is all of the documentation, price lists, guides, and code lists are in great condition and add to the uniqueness of this set. The leather case is in good condition, with the outside showing some rips and tears and rub marks, as it was obvious that this set was used, but most of the wear is indeed confined to the outside of the case. There are several places where the leather has torn from the case. As for inside, the tray is wooden with a purple felt interior that is faded and age, but in nice display condition. The felt dividers below the tray are also faded and could use a good cleaning but also in good display condition.

Overall, this is an amazing old optometrist set from the 1910’s-1920’s. It’s amazingly complete, and I tried to be as descriptive as possible about the condition, and overall for it’s age, is a stunning display of medical science of the early 20th century. I'm unsure of some of the uses of the instruments and whether or not more items were included, as I just don't know for sure what was supposed to be included. Please feel free to request any additional pics.

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