ATS Old Glass
Notes and Images of Antique Telescopes and on the History of Astronomy
Fitz 7-Inch Refractor Erskine College
The Erskine College Telescope. Seven inch refractor built in 1849 by Henry Fitz, one of the first successful American telescope makers. This is the earliest known of the forty remaining Fitz telescopes. Restored by ATS member Bob Ariail and donated to the South Carolina State Museum in 1985.
Fauth Mount Santa Clara U.
The unrestored Fauth equatorial mount formerly in use at The Ricard Observatory at Santa Clara University is now being restored by an ATS member to eventually mount a seven inch Fitz refractor.
Fauth 8-Inch Refractor Santa Clara U.
Eight inch Fauth refractor located at the Santa Clara University’s Ricard Observatory, being examined by ATS founder Bart Fried during the 1994 ATS annual meeting.
Clark 5-Inch Refractor Santa Clara U.
Late 19th century five inch Clark refractor on display at the ATS 1994 Annual Meeting at Santa Clara CA. Clark is recognized as America’s “Artist in Optics”.
Clark 16-Inch Refractor Santa Clara U.
Two shots of the equatorial mount of the 16-Inch Clark refractor at Ricard Observatory, University of Santa Clara.
Clark 6-Inch Refractor
Outdoor shot of a nicely restored tripod mounted 6-Inch Clark. – The same 6-Inch Clark mounted on its pier.
Tulley 2 5/8" Refractor
1830 era Tulley refractor, 2 5/8-inch aperture, 4 inch focal length, Signed H. Tulley. (It is unclear whether it is by Henry Tulley of Bath of by Charles Tulley of Islington.) – Closeup of the tailpiece and maker’s signature.
Closeup of the objective lens of a 2.5 inch Tulley refractor, circa 1830, using crossed polarizers to show stresses in the glass.
Secretan 4.1-Inch Refractor
Tailpiece shots of the 19th century 4.1 inch f15 Secretan refractor. It is the same one that appears mounted as the finder on the image of the 8-inch Fauth described above.
Secretan 4.1-Inch Refractor
Lens shot of the same Secretan. Note the lens spacers and the long screws protruding through that secure the lens cell. On to restoration…
Flamsteed Telescope Royal Observatory Greenwich, England
Interior view of The Great Star Room or Octagon Room as it is now called at Flamsteed House next to the old Royal Observatory at Greenwich, England. Little changed since built in 1675, this octagonal room has high windows for observing and ladderlike supports for the long refractors of the day. From this room John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal, pursued his royal assignment: “…to apply himself with the utmost care and diligence to the rectifying the tables of the motions of the heavens and the places of the fixed stars so as to find out the so much desired longitude of places for the perfecting of the art of navigation.”
Flamsteed House Royal Observatory Greenwich, England
The exterior of Flamsteed House. Built by Sir Christopher Wren in 1675 for John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal at the order of King Charles II of England. The residence is next to the old Royal Observatory at Greenwich, England. The red “time ball” on the roof was added in 1833 as a visual signal for all the navigators on the nearby River Thames. Transit in the observatory measured noon each day at the prime meridian. After setting chonometers, the ball was raised at 12:55 PM and dropped precisely at 1:00 PM as a local time signal. In 1836 the Observatory began “distributing” the time to the principal chronometer makers in London. John Henry Belville and later his daughter Ruth would set a large pocket chronometer each Monday morning and set off down the hill to the City of London. The pocket chronometer was affectionately referred to as “Arnold” after its maker John Arnold.