Joseph Henry's Letter to Benjamin Silliman, Sr. (September 10, 1835)

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Letter from Joseph Henry, then a professor at Princeton University and later first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, to Benjamin Silliman, Sr., a chemist and professor at Yale University, September 10, 1835. In the letter, Henry analyzes the first electromagnetic motor invented by Thomas Davenport, a blacksmith in Vermont.


  • Silliman, Benjamin 1816-1885
  • Yale University
  • Princeton University


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


7 pages scanned from the edited transcript of the original version and notes in the Joseph Henry Papers Volume 2, pages 445-451.

Contained within

Reingold, Nathan, et al, eds., The Papers of Joseph Henry, Volume 2, The Princeton Years: November 1832-December 1835 (Washington: Smithsonian Institution, 1975), 445-451

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,


September 10, 1835

Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions


  • Secretaries
  • Letters
  • Inventions
  • Chemists
  • Electromagnets
  • Motors
  • Electromagnetism




  • Document
  • Paper

ID Number

SIA2012-0909 and SIA2012-0910 and SIA2012-0911 and SIA2012-0912 and SIA2012-0913 and SIA2012-0914 and SIA2012-0915

Physical description

Number of Images: 7 ; Color: Black and White ; Size: 7w x 10h ; Type of Image: Document ; Medium: Paper

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