This book, as the name indicates, is a catalog of meteorological instruments currently held at the Smithsonian Institution. The instruments are divided into ten categories: barometers and barographs, thermometers and thermographs, instruments for the measurement of atmospheric humidity, instruments for the measurement of precipitation and evaporation, instruments for measuring surface wind, sunshine recorders, nephoscopes, upper air instruments (not telemetering), radiosondes, and miscellaneous meteorological instruments. For each of the categories, Middleton starts with a short summary of the history of the development of the instrument, and then goes on to describe briefly the various types of instruments that are now in the Smithsonian collection. The more interesting or important instruments are described in the and are set apart typographically, which, however, allows the reader to follow the narrative uninterrupted. The instruments not mentioned in the main text are listed at the end of the chapter.
Asit K. Biswas
Published in Technology and Culture, 1970