AAS 199th meeting, Washington, DC, January 2002
Session 1. HAD I: New Views of Historical Research in the 21st Century
Special Session Oral, Sunday, January 6, 2002, 2:00-4:00pm, Caucus

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[1.05] A great place to study astronomy: The Smithsonian Institution Archives

M. Rothenberg, A. Bain (Smithsonian Archives)

Astronomy was the second discipline supported by the Smithsonian Institution. Support of astronomical research at the Smithsonian Institution began in 1848, two years after the establishment of the organization, with the publication of Sears C. Walker’s work on the orbit of recently-discovered Neptune. This was followed immediately by the publication of John Downes’s lists of occultations. Over the succeeding 150 years, the Institution has continued to be a major participant in astronomical research.

This paper will present highlights of the astronomical collections–-both correspondence and astronomical data–-held by the Smithsonian Institution Archives. The authors hope to encourage historical research in collections which have heretofore been neglected.

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