A magic lantern is essentially an old-fashioned slide projector that was used during the 19th and early 20th centuries. To operate the lantern, the lamp inside the lantern is lit, creating a light source, which then allows the slide to be projected through a lens onto a blank wall. This lantern, ca. 1900, was passed down for three generations in the family of the donor, William Jordan. The donation includes twelve lantern-slides, the lantern itself and the original box.