Collection of Wheel Charts, Wheel Calculators and other Circular Ephemera
Held at: Lehigh University Special Collections [Contact Us]Lehigh University, Linderman Library, 30 Library Drive, Bethlehem, PA 18045
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Lehigh University Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
There is a rich history of the information wheel which has been used since the fourteenth century to measure, record, predict and calculate everything. In present day it is relevant as a model for modern interactive design. This particular collection of wheel charts displays an assortment of uses: the measurement of cement and lumber needed for a building project in the Lehigh scale from Lehigh Portland Cement Company Allentown, Pennsylvania, various solar system facts from Swift's premium meats, a backseat Bingo game for auto road trips, FEMA emergency preparedness, typeface printers measurements from Mack Printing Group, Pennsylvania state education facts and recycling of materials from EXXON. The two-dimensional interactivity displays complex information neatly in hands-on exercise of logical alignments by rotation of a wheel or opening a finger-tip shutter. In these forms of interaction is shown the basis of how an Internet search is conducted in our electronic age. What is especially important in this collection is that two of the examples represent local companies: Lehigh Portland Cement Company Allentown, Pennsylvania and Mack Printing Group - the former Christmas City Printing Bethlehem, Pennsylvania - both companies are now in the past history of the region.
The collection contains six wheel charts and one finger tip shutter game. All of the examples are made from cardboard printed in various colors with some lamination. One example has two wheels interacting in a graph displaying not only linear but also volumetric measurement, others are printed on both sides displaying various aspects of interconnected topics as in the case of recycling or emergency preparedness.
The arrangement is chronological.
Purchase, October 2019.
- Lehigh University Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- Eleanor Nothelfer.
- Lehigh University Library and Technology Services.
- Access Restrictions
Access Restrictions: Collection housed remotely. Users need to contact 24 hours in advance.
- Use Restrictions
Collection is open for research.
Please inquire about copyright information.
Lehigh Portland Cement Co. Allentown, Pa. Lumber Scale. Two wheels
within rectangle measuring 6.5 x 12 cm, printed on both sides red and blue on white. Side 1: Lumber scale conversion of feet board measure, square measure, long measure, solid measure. Side 2: Quantity of materials required to make one cubic yard of rammed concrete, mixed in the proportion of 1 sack of cement to cu.ft. of sand, to cu. ft. of stone...Using 1 inch stone and under dust screened out; Using 2 ½ inch stone most small stone screened out, using 2 ½ inch stone and under, dust screened out, Using ¾ inch gravel and under sand screened out BBLS of cement, cu. yds. of sand, cu. yds of stone; Mortar made with coarse sand figured on the end of scale, Mortar made with fine figured on this end of scale.
Rossig Educational Chart Wheel: Pennsylvania - An Instructive Compilation by Counties. Wheel measures 26 cm, black and red on white. Wheel charts produced before World War II tended to include more pictorial features to illustrate information, such as a "keystone" pointer indicating the county of choice for facts. Pennsylvania is known as the Keystone State. [This chart wheel is illustrated in Jessica Helfand's Reinventing the Wheel, 2002 Princeton Architectural Press, p. 106.]
Swift's Premium Meats. Swift's Space Guides, CA. 1950: Measures 13.5 x 11.5 cm circular "dial" within a rectangle, blue, yellow, red, green on white, printed on both sides. The "dial" selects the planets seeking planetary information. [This educational chart wheel is illustrated in Jessica Helfand's Reinventing the Wheel, 2002 Princeton Architectural Press, p. 39]
Regal Manufacture Company Chicago. Auto Bingo. Measures 6 ¾ inches
square, printed on one side green on white with red "finger tip shutters."
This game is No. 90-3 of Highway Auto Bingo backseat bingo game. Came in set of 3 cards issued in green, pink, blue or orange colors. It served as a bingo game for road trip "I Spy" games. Other varieties are Interstate Highway Bingo, Traffic Safety Bingo. Backseat entertainment before Video games. Regal Manufacture Co. seems to have made many forms of paper games used for entertainment before the age of electronics.
Exxon Clean Environment - Team Requirement - Recycling Wheel. Compliments of the Baton Rouge Refinery. Measures 27 x 23.5 cm, printed both sides blue, yellow, pink, green on white. Wheel around a wheel with hanging tab. 1 side: Businesses, Industries, Institutions, Municipal Governments, States and Provinces, Federal Governments, Individuals, Community Groups. 2 side: 4 "pies" Miscellaneous, 3 "pies" Paper, Glass, 3 "pies" Metal, 3 "pies" Plastic, Yard Wastes, Kitchen waste.
MACK Printing Group. Proportion Guide for fractional dimensions and
for decimal or metric dimensions. Measures 16.5 x 14.5 cm, printed on both
sides, Perrygraf, L.A., CA. red and black on white. Original Size wheel on Reproduction size square with 5 Inches and 13 Centimeters scale Percent with Point Scale; Decimal or metric dimensions original size percent wheel on Reproduction size square with 70 Agates and 30 Picas and Cap Heights 8pt to 60pt.
Heritage Preservation, Inc. Emergency Response and Salvage Wheel: Measures 28 x 26 cm, red, black, blue, yellow on white, printed on both sides. Side 1: Disaster Alert 1, Safety First! 2, Getting Started Off-Site 3, Stabilize the Building and Environment 4, Documentation 5, Retrieval and Protection 6, Damage Assessment 7, Salvage Priorities 8, Historic Buildings: General Tips 9. FEMA Emergency Numbers Emergency Response Action Steps. Side 2: Books and Paper, Electronic Records, Textiles, Furniture, Ceramics/Stone/Metal, Organic Materials, Natural History Specimens, Framed Artworks, Photographs. FEMA Heritage Preservation, Emergency Salvage Steps. www.Heritage Preservation.org [This "wheel" originally adapted from the Environmental Hazards Management Institute's Environmental Action Wheel. This is a wheel within a wheel with two magnets attached to a tab.]