Polariscope engraving, circa 1928


Welcome to the Robert A. Paselk Scientific Instrument Museum. The Museum's collection consists primarily of scientific instruments and apparatus used at Cal Poly Humboldt, beginning around 1925. This web-site is intended to serve both as a stand-alone on-line museum, and as an information resource for physical displays.

  • If you are visiting our displays on campus click on the display cases page to access interactive image maps leading to detailed information about the instruments on display and the context of the display.

  • If you are visiting the museum on-line, then go to the on-line exhibit pages for access to the collections and archives by time periord, collection/exhibit, etc.

Humboldt first opened to students in 1914 as Humboldt Normal School, a two year college for training teachers. It was later renamed Cal Poly Humboldt Teachers College, then Cal Poly Humboldt College, and today, Cal Poly Humboldt. Beginning in the 1920's laboratory science became a part of the instruction at Humboldt. Initially these classes were designed as part of Humboldt's junior college function - preparing students to transfer to the University of California at Berkeley. From this humble beginning Humboldt gradually evolved to a University where excellence in science instruction is fundamental to its international reputation in Natural Resources and Sciences.

If you have additional information regarding the instruments you think I could/should include please share that information. I am particularly interested in additional contemporary catalog illustrations for the instruments missing that information. I am also interested in contemporary sources for the use of these instruments in teaching etc. I may be contacted by e-mail: rap1@humboldt.edu .