Our History

eRittenhouse is the online successor to the print journal Rittenhouse published for almost 25 years by Drs. Yola and David Coffeen of Tesseract and Raymond Giordano of Antiquarian Scientist. If you are looking for copies of Rittenhouse see the information at the bottom of this page.

Originally focused on America, Rittenhouse expanded to cover the history of scientific instrument use and manufacturing in North America.  The editors of Rittenhouse were Deborah Warner (National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution), Randall Brooks (Canada Science and Technology Museum) and Stephen Turner (National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution).

eRittenhouse as an online journal has broadened its mandate to cover all of the Americas. It will also expand, as has the history of science and technology, to cover not only the manufacture, sale and use of instruments but also the social impact and influence of scientific instruments.

With the translation tools available online, we are encouraging authors to submit contributions in Spanish, Portuguese and French with a summary in English.

For continuity, volume numbers for eRittenhouse will continue those of the former print journal.


  • Randall Brooks, Editor
  • Erich Weidenhammer, Assistant Editor
Dr. Brooks retired from the Canada Science and Technology Museum Corp. in 2011 having served variously as Curator, Physical Sciences and Space, Director of the Curatorial Division and Vice-President (now Emeritus) of the Corporation’s Collection and Research Branch.  His PhD thesis and subsequent research has focused primarily on the history of astronomy, its instrumentation and assessment of instrumental errors.
Dr. Weidenhammer is currently an Associate at the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology.  For his PhD thesis Erich studied medicine and chemistry in the British Enlightenment through examining the career of the prominent Scottish physician John Pringle (1707-1782). Erich is a co-founder of the University of Toronto Scientific Instruments Collection (UTSIC.org). His blog about scientific material culture may be found at Thickobjects.org.

Editorial Board

The following people kindly provide the Editor with assistance in establishing the editorial direction of the journal:

  • David Coffeen, Tesseract
  • Rand Evans, University of East Carolina (emeritus)
  • Marcus Granato, Museu de Astronomia e Ciencias Afins, Rio de Janeiro
  • Rich Kremer, Dartmouth College
  • David Pantalony, Canada Science and Technology Museum
  • Richard Paselk, Humboldt State University
  • Sara Schechner, Harvard University

Purchasing Copies of Rittenhouse

To purchase back issues of Rittenhouse, volumes 1-23, #s 1-70, contact:
David Coffeen at www.etesseract.com

ISSN 2291-3688  eRittenhouse