J. H. Steward company was known as the optician to her majesty's government in London, England. They operated from 1852-1892 under the owner/proprietor J.H. Steward (James Henry Steward). The company produced instruments for optical measuring, observation, military use, drawing and surveying.This utilitarian metal lantern slide projector would have been used for professional, rather than domestic use. It used gas as an illuminant fuel. These gas lantern slide projectors would have been used for entertainment and education.

This magic lantern has a rectangular black painted metal body. Access to the lamp housing is via a top hinged flap at the rear of the lantern. A rectangular aperture in the roof of the body allows a cowl or chimney to be attached to permit the dispersal of generated heat. A pipe is attached to the interior base and extends from the back of the projector. This would have supplied gas to use as illuminant for the lantern. The lens housing is manufactured of brass and features a brass screw control. A condenser would have been part of this projector.