Thermometer Museum

Dick Porter's thermometer museum in Onset MA.

Dick Porter, of Onset MA, has been building his collection of over 5000 thermometers since the mid-80s, though the collection has nearly doubled since 1998 when it was just over 3000. He calls it the world’s largest and only thermometer museum. He’s certainly passionate about them, and he’s been an invited speaker at more than a few thermometer and weather related events, like the christening of the world’s largest thermometer in Baker California.

The collection, which Porter values at about $4 per piece, fills his home’s small basement, and visitors should expect him to be an active docent. He has stories about many of the thermometers, even some memories of the day the scientific community decided to honor Anders Celsius by eponymously renaming his centigrade scale. Thinking of scales, Porter even has a few Reamur thermometers. Impressive, yes, though Wikipedia notes a few more temperature scales he didn’t mention. I guess it’s challenges like that that get a guy through the day.

It’s all at 49 Zarahemla Road Onset, MA 02558, and visitors should probably give Mr. Porter a call (508) 295-5504 to confirm he’ll be home to host you. All info current as of my October 2005 visit, more info at Roadside America and Odd New England.

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7 thoughts on “Thermometer Museum

  1. I’ve been to the world’s largest thermometer! I was thrilled to sweat it out as it turning from 115 to 116 fahrenheit degrees. Sigh… what a great trip.

  2. Is there a way I could get a jpg of your thermometer museum pic for publication? We’ll give you credit..

    [tags]thermometer museum[/tags]

  3. hello – i have a very unusual thermometer – scientific
    if i sent you photos – would you tell me what exactly it is ?
    there are two large bulbs on either end – one end is submerged in liquid – its filled with mercury – would you mind seeing photos of it and tell me what you think it is ?
    regards bow from australia

    • Hi Bow, I have just got a similar therometer to yours with glass bowls a thermometer inside one with a liquid, what is it for ? Did you get any response to your posting? Hope you may give me an answer. Rod.

  4. Hello. I was writing because I stumbled across your website, because I was looking up, antique thermometers. I’m not sure if you are selling any thermometers or if you just have many on display, but maybe you could help me out with a question I have. I have a thermometer that I am trying to figure out how old it is. I have never seen any one like it before. It is kind of hard to give you a description but I have a picture of it. Maybe you have one similar? It is all metal. (the back, and the dog) but the thermometer sits on a paper/cardboard that has the numbers on the left side and on the right side, are the words, Zero, Freezing, Tempe rate, summer heat, Blood Heat. I have not seen any other thermometers like this one. Have you? If so do you have any idea of its age? I saw your picture you have on your website on some of the ones you have but I can’t tell if there is any like the one I have…(without the dog/pug)
    OK well I am again, sorry to have bothered you , but your help is greatly appreciated…or any other info you might have that could help me out. Thank you in advance, and if you could please e-mail me back at that would be great. I looked on this site to e-mail you but could not find an e-mail address so I am just hoping you will read this and reply to me.
    Thanks and please reply…
    Thank you
    P.S. I forgot to mention that the paper/cardboard is held onto the metal by two small steel/metal pin type eyes…like what a duo-tang notebook. The metal comes apart into two and you push them down. (I forget what these are called)

  5. i have a thermometer in a picture frame with a edward hopper, poem entitled jesus savoir pilot me, and picture of old ship and seagulls, it has bllod heat,, summer, temperate and freezing, i dont know how old it is?

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