THE PRODUCTION BOOKS
R & J BECK 1867-1898
These three workshop books contain the details of all microscopes made by R & J Beck between serial number 4713 [4 April 1867], and serial number 21569 [8 September 1898].
The date the raw materials were given to the workman, the date they were received back as finished articles, the name of the workman who made them, a brief description of the instrument, and its serial number - all are included in these photographs of the original pages from the three Production Books - 4713-9484, 9485-15748, and 15749-21659.
In all, there are about 270 openings [that is, 540 facsimile pages] - pure gold dust for all with a specific interest in the history of Beck microscopes, or any interest in the wider history of the instrument.
It is possible from these pages to ascertain accurate figures of production of the various models, the numbers of the skilled workforce engaged, the time it took then to make the various stands, and other data.
Using the information in the book it is possible to firstly date a stand and secondly to use the information to expand upon the raw data:-
The entry below refers to a stand in my posession.
The stand itself - indeed a Best Student model:-
..and the number:-
From the information in the production book a search of the 1881 census reveals the workman:-
1881 Census for C. Collop
2 Harrington Grove, Islington, London, Middlesex, England
Charles COLLOP, aged 55, born at Chingford, Essex, England. Occupation - Optician
Harriett COLLOP, wife of the above, aged 53, born at St Lukes
Charles COLLOP, son of the above, unmarried, aged 28, born at Chingford, Essex, England. Occupation - Cabinet Maker