Inside Bennington Museum's collection: Terrestrial Globe, 1810
James Wilson of Bradford, Vt., was a farmer and blacksmith of little formal education who created the first globes in America. At age 37, with a farm to run and a large family to support, he set forth to make globes as fine as those imported from England, but at a price village schools could afford.
Wilson sold some of his stock to raise $130 (an enormous sum of money at the time) and purchased a 1797 set of Encyclopedia Britannica. He traveled to Connecticut to learn the art of engraving. This is one of a small group of Wilson's earliest globes still extant.
While the Bennington Museum is closed, we invite you to explore our online database at https://bennington.pastperfectonline.com/, found on our website under Collections/Research. And be sure to tune into our Tours at Ten on the Museum Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/benningtonmuseum/ for great programming about our collection, galleries, history, and so much more. We also welcome your ideas and suggestions. Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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