Antique 19th century Kelvin and Hughes ship's binnacle with the original weights. Measures 56" high, 30" wide at the weights and 13" wide at the center. Made in Britain by Kelvin and Huges circa 1880. Its traditional purpose was to hold the ship's magnetic compass, gimbal mounted to keep it level while the ship pitched and rolled. A binnacle may be subdivided into sections and its contents typically include one or more compasses and an oil lamp or other light source. Other devices such as a sand timer for estimating speed may have been stored in the binnacle as well.
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