George Merz was born in 1793 into a peasant family in Bichl, in southern Bavaria. At the age of 15 he joined a glass factory as a worker where he showed great aptitude for optics, being appointed director of the optical department in 1818. In 1830 he became a partner in the company and in 1839 he acquired it, moving to Munich and He changes the name in 1845 to Merz und Sohne and, on the death of his son Ludwig in 1858, to the definitive G&S Merz, adding Siegmund's initial to his. The moment of maximum splendor coincides with these years until 1867, the moment of George's death. His optics are recognized for their high quality in achromatic and spherical correction.
This model, No. 1, is the largest and most complete ever built by Merz. The serial number is 1639, so it was made approximately in 1869, coinciding with the time immediately after the founder's death. It is kept in an extraordinary state of conservation and has some peculiarities that make it very rare. It is very robust, everything in it is original and the observation platform is rotating, being able to rotate 360º. The eyepiece is graduated, surely to be used in observations with polarized light. It has another 3 eyepieces and 5 objectives, three of them in their original bottles where the magnifications obtained with each of the eyepieces are inscribed. One of the lenses has a correction collar.
References: "Billings Microscope Collection" pag 195, fig. 373
G. Turner, "Great Age of the Microscope", pag 12
H. Moe, "The Story of the Microscope", pag 194