7 Books, Manuals, and Sheets

Slide Rule Books and Manuals

The collection also contains significant tables of logarithms, softbound and hardbound contemporaneous manuals and textbooks on the use of slide rules, and more recent books on the history of the slide rule. Sometimes such reference books may have been included in the sale of a particular slide rule, but often they were sold independently. The list below does not include common leaflets or paper instructions that do not list an author, which are occasionally found with slide rules.

Contemporaneous:

  • Tables de Logarithmes
    • [hardbound] Chez veuve DESAINTE, Libraire, rue du Foin, Paris, 1781
    • tables of logarithms of numbers from 1 to 21600, and of sines/tangents
  • A System of Geometry and Trigonometry Together with a Treatise on Surveying, Third Edition, Abel Flint
    • [hardbound] Published by Oliver D. Cooke, Hartford; Samuel T. Armstrong, Printer, Boston; 1813
    • Logarithm tables and chapter on the use of logarithms in performing surveying calculations
  • Key to the Endless Self-Computing Scale, Aaron Palmer
  • Palmer’s Pocket Scale, with Rules for its Use in Solving Arithmetical and Geometrical Problems, Aaron Palmer
    • [hardbound] Aaron Palmer publisher, Canfield and Warren printers, Boston, 1845
    • next edition companion text to Palmer’s Computing Scale
    • small 2.5-inch computing scale attached to inside back cover
    • see America’s Earliest Slide Rule
  • A Treatise on a Box of Instruments and the Slide-Rule, Thomas Kentish
    • [hardbound] Relfe & Fletcher, 1847
    • Second Edition
    • see Jour. Oughtred Soc. 20.2 p39 (2011)

  • Treatise on Instrumental Arithmetic, or Utility of the Slide Rule, Arnold Jillson
    • [hardbound] The Case, Lockwood & Brainard Company, Hartford, 1874
    • small 3.75” x 4.75” pocket companion for the Mechanic, Manager, and Operative; 194 pages; original copyright 1859
    • describes use of early slide rules, where A=B=C are two-decades, and D is one decade
      • Part I – “where the figure 1, on the D line, is found in the middle” (carpenter’s rule)
      • Part II – “the figure 1, upon this instrument, on the D line, is found at the end at left hand” (engineer’s rule)
  • Logarithmic Tables of Numbers and Trigonometrical Functions, 61.Edition, Baron Von Vega
    • [hardbound] W. Pormetter, Berlin, 1880
    • Inscribed, “Ralph H Damon, Concord, Mass.; 293 Columbus Av, Boston; Mass. Inst. Technology; Feb 1, 1881.”
  • The Mechanics’ Slide Rule, and How to Use It, Fred T. Hodgson
    • The Industrial Publication Company, New York, 1881
    • pdf
  • Five-Place Logarithmic and Trigonometric Tables, G.A. Wentworth and G.A. Hill
    • [hardbound] Ginn & Company, Boston, 1890
  • The Slide Rule: A Practical Manual, Eighth Edition, C.N. Pickworth
    • [hardbound] D. Van Nostrand, Co., New York, 1903
  • Instructions for the Use of A.W. Faber’s Improved Calculating Rule, Charles N. Pickworth
  • The Mannheim Slide Rule, Wm. Cox
    • Keuffel & Esser Co., New York, NY, c. 1905
  • The Use of the Slide Rule, F.A. Halsey
    • D. Van Nostrand Company, New York, 1907
    • Fourth Edition, Revised and Enlarged
  • How To Use Slide Rules, D. Petri Palmedo
  • Mannheim and Multiplex Slide Rules, Third Edition, L.W. Rosenthal
    • Eugene Dietzgen Co., Chicago, 1911
  • The Slide Rule Simplified, Seventh Edition, Geo. W. Richardson and J.J. Clark
    • Technical Supply Co., Chicago, 1918
  • The Polyphase Duplex Slide Rule: A Self Teaching Manual, William E. Breckenridge
    • Keuffel & Esser Co., New York, 1924.
  • The Phillips Slide Rule, Allan R. Cullimore
    • Eugene Dietzgen Co., 1925
  • Elementary Slide Rule Manual, H. Ritow
    • A Self-Instructing Text Book for Beginners
    • The Frederick Post Co., Chicago, 1925
    • pdf
  • The Slide Rule and Logarithmic Tables, Second Edition, J.J. Clark
    • [hardbound] Frederick Drake & Co., Chicago, 1928
  • Trigonometry – Side Rule – Mechanics, I.C.S. Staff
    • [hardbound] International Textbook Company, Scranton, PA, 1930 – 1930 – 1934 (for the 3 sections)
    • written for International Correspondence School, Ltd., the first distance-learning institution in the United States
    • 59 pages dedicated to the use of the slide rule
  • The Mannheim Slide Rule: A Self Teaching Manual, William E. Breckenridge
    • Keuffel & Esser Co., New York, 1938
  • The Slide Rule, Rufus T. Strohm,
    • [hardbound] International Textbook Company, Scranton, 1939
  • The Log Log Duplex Decitrig Slide Rule No. 4081, A Manual, Lyman M. Kells, Willis F. Kern, and James R. Bland
    • Keuffel & Esser Co., New York, 1939.
    • Formidable text on the use of the major scales of the advanced slide rule
    • owner Richard Schroeder, Childress Army Air Field, Base Weather Station
  • Six-Place Tables, Sixth Edition, Edward S. Allen
    • [hardbouind] McGraw-Hill Book Company Inc., New York, 1941
  • Mathematics for Electricians and Radiomen, Nelson M. Cooke
    • [hardbound] McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., New York and London, 1942
    • inventor of the K&E Model 4139, Cooke Radio Slide Rule
    • See Chapter VII. The Slide Rule – Powers of Ten (p. 55)
  • Manual: Polyphase Slide Rule No. N4053, William E. Breckenridge
    • Keuffel & Esser Co., New York, 1944.
  • A Manual for the Slide Rule, First Edition, Paul E. Machovina
    • McGraw-Hill Book Company Inc., New York, 1950
  • The Versalog Slide Rule: An Instruction Manual, E.I Fiesenheiser
    • [hardbound] The Fredrick Post Co., Chicago, 1951
  • How to Use Pickett Dual Base Log Log Slide Rules, Maurice L. Hartung
    • Pickett and Eckel Inc., Chicago, 1953
  • K&E Slide Rules: A Self Instruction Manual, Lyman M. Kells, Willis F. Kern, and James R. Bland
    • [hardbound] Keuffel & Esser Co., Morristown, NJ, 1955
  • Smoley’s Three Combined Tables, for Engineers, Architects and Students – Parallel Tables of Logarithms and Squares, Parallel Tables of Slopes and Rises, Logarithmic Trigonometric Tables, C.K. Smoley, extended by E.R. Smoley and N.G. Smoley
    • [hardbound] C.K. Smoley and Sons, Inc., Chautauqua, NY, 1958
  • K&E Slide Rules: Deci-Lon, An Instruction Manual
    • [hardbound] Keuffel & Esser Co., Morristown, NJ, 1962
  • Versalog II Slide Rule Instruction Manual and Applied Text, George John Zanotti
    • Teledyne Post, Chicago, 1970

Non-Contemporaneous:

  • Slide Rules: Their History, Models, and Makers, Peter M. Hopp
    • Astragal Press, Mendham, NJ, 1999
  • Slide Rules: A Journey Through Three Centuries, Deter von Jezierski
    • Astragal Press, Mendham, NJ, 2000
    • English translation from original 1977 German text
  • Pocket-Watch Slide Rules, Peter M. Hopp
    • Astragal Press, Mendham, NJ, 2011
  • Pocketbook of the Gauge Marks, Second Edition, Panagiotis Venetsianos
    • The Oughtred Society, Roseville, CA, 2011
  • Slide Rule Instructions Library, Michael Konshak
    • [hardbound] International Slide Rule Museum Library Reprints, independently published, 2021+
      • Reprints of slide rule instructions, for the use of collectors, educators and students. All ephemera currently archived in the International Slide Rule Museum library.
    • Vol. 1: Hemmi Slide Rule Instructions (Annotated)
    • Vol. 2: Keuffel & Esser Slide Rule Instructions (Annotated)
    • Vol. 3: Pickett Slide Rule Instructions (Annotated)
    • Vol. 8: Faber-Castell Slide Rule Instructions (Annotated)


Slide Sheets

Many companies and industries produced inexpensive sliding charts, or slide sheets, for quick computations used to solve repetitive specific calculations in business and engineering applications. These sheets are generally made of paper or thin plastic, and typically operate just as a specialty slide rule, relying heavily on logarithmic scales and sometimes perform rather complex computations. While not compiled as part of the slide rule collection, a small group of slide sheets has been acquired and is presented here.

  • GE Fluorescent Lighting Calculator, 1b-1173, 1951
    • Made by Graphic Calculator Co., Chicago
    • Dual-slide chart for determining number of light fixtures in area for given footcandles
    • includes standard C/D (labeled A/B) slide rule scales on back; in original paper sleeve
    • images of front and back.
  • Dwyer Air Velocity Calculator, Dwyer Instruments, Inc., Michigan City, IN, 1957
    • Made by Slide Chart Corp., PERRYGRAF Corp., Maywood, IL
    • Given relative humidity and dry bulb temperature, find air density vs. barometric pressure
    • images of front and back.
  • GE Radiation Calculator, Model GEN-15C, c. 1965
    • for calclulations related to blackbody radiation
    • includes standard C/D slide rule scales
    • images of front and back.
    • Example Problems (from ISRM website).
    • Johnson and Stewart paper.
  • Arvin Diamond Camera Range Calculator, Diamond Electronics, Lancaster, OH, 1979
    • Made by AMERICAN Slide-Chart Corp., Wheaton, IL
    • Used to compute area of coverage for a given focal length of a TV camera and its tube (faceplate) size
    • images of front and back.
  • EG&G Judson Infrared Radiation Calculator, 1986
    • made by PERRYGRAF, Los Angeles, CA
    • for general black body calculations, wording tailored to infrared radiation
    • images of front and back.
    • see GE Radiation Calculator above for instructions