"The magnetic compass was the first technological invention after the wheel to change the world."
Amir D. Aczel, in The riddle of the compass

Aeronautical Compasses

Nautical Compasses

Marching Compasses
Wrist and Pin-on Compasses
Survey & Artillery Compasses
Escape Compasses
Pocket Compasses
Other Compasses
(jewelry, watches and objects for everyday use, galvanometers etc.)
Religion &
The exhibits are allocated to ten* different categories depending on their function. To visit a specialised department, just click on the picture of the relevant category. You can also use on all pages the pull-down menu button COMPASS TYPES. Clicking on the button SEARCH will lead you to the instruments via the manufacturers' names or technical words (example: miner's compass). The five chapters under MISCELLANEOUS are also being completed on a weekly basis.

* The pin-on lapel compasses are displayed together with the wrist compasses because of their very limited occcurrence.

Copyright: The content of this Website is covered by Copyright OCM 2008-2014 and access to this website is subject to the OCM (COMPASSIPEDIA) Disclaimer.

 Spring 2014
Dear visitors,
This museum is not meant as a simple exhibition of antiques but pretends to give an overall picture of the technology being gradually replaced by satellite navigation systems. We thank all those who steadily help building up what is becoming the largest reference data base worldwide for all sorts of compasses, by sending us pictures and/or technical and historical information. 

Discover our new items:

- Miscell./Bibliography: we added to our library two (German) books: Magnetismus (2010), der Flugzeugkompass (1917, aircraft comp.).

- Aeronautics: The entry about HAMILTON was rectified and enhanced thanks to the inventor's family. Moreover, models made by GOERZ or designed by Pfadfinder and made by Plath.

- Survey/Artillery: Numerous docts. out the private archives of BÜCHI (development of the "Sitometer"-level), Russian instr. signed O. RICHTER and K. RODE, a beautiful hand-coloured comp. dating back to Napoleon Ist, a very rare large ROSSIGNOL with clinometer, a German WWI device called Kilometer-Zirkel used to measure distances on maps.

- Marching comp.: a Russ. model signed Glavkulttorg and a Swedish one made by LYTH featuring a mirror, sights and a ruler.

- Wrist comp.: a children's comp. offered with the French cartoon PIF le chien, wrist watches made by HOROSWISS and a model probably made for Canada.

- Pocket comp.: a Russian ADBER (АДБЕРЪ), a very unusual model (Austria?), a late plastic hunter TAYLOR (Instr. Co.), a C. STOCKERT box comp. dated 1910, a luxury golden SINGER, and a down-sized tell-tale compass.