Ernst Plank Magic Lantern w/ 9 glass slides 3 broken
Ernst Plank, the manufacturer was founded in 1866 and produced tin toy trains and boats, as well as magic lanterns. At one time it was the second largest manufacturer of magic lanterns in Nuremberg, Germany. Nuremberg was a major centre for metal toy production and export in the latter part of the 19th century and up to World War I.
While the invention of the magic lantern is generally seen to be in the 17th century, its greatest popularity as an optical projector spans the late 18th Century to the early decades of the 20th Century. It was used both as a means of entertainment and education.
Magic lanterns use a concave mirror and light source to project images on glass slides with painted or photographic scenes. Developed in the 17th century, magic lanterns predate slide projectors and motion pictures. In the hands of magicians, they became "lanterns of fright," projecting wondrous images and apparitions. Slide themes ranged widely: exotic travel, folklore, advertising, history, science, and art.