X-ray set, England, 1920-1923

1920-1923 in London
Newton and Wright Limited
An X-Ray room in the 1930. Room set display in Lower Wellcome Gallery of the Science Museum

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An X-Ray room in the 1930. Room set display in Lower Wellcome Gallery of the Science Museum
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

X-ray set comprising fluoroscopic chest screening frame, couch with facility for fluoroscopy and x-ray photography, protective apron, power supply and control unit, by Newton and Wright Limited, London, England, 1920-1923, used until 1960.

Fluoroscopy allows X-rays to be viewed without taking and developing X-ray photographs. This X-ray machine doubles as a fluoroscopic chest screening frame. It is shown in a reconstruction of a 1930s X-ray room. The set also includes a control panel to set the dosage levels, and a screen to protect the radiographer. X-rays were discovered in 1895 by German physicist Wilhelm Röntgen (1845-1923). They allowed physicians their first look inside the body without surgery.

This X-ray machine was originally used at Westmorland County Hospital in Kendal, Cumbria, England. It was transferred to the private surgery in a doctor’s home in the 1940s. The machine was made by Newton & Wright Limited. It remained in use until the 1960s. It was probably quite unusual that physicians owned their own equipment. This was because the machines were expensive to buy and maintain. X-ray departments were rare in hospitals before the First World War. However, almost every hospital in the UK had one by the 1930s.


Object Number:
x-ray machine
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
Wraith, F.