Edward Emerson Barnard Papers
Edward Emerson Barnard Papers
Edward Emerson Barnard, 1857-1923 grew from a life of poverty to become a well-known astronomer. He made a name for himself in Nashville by discovering nearly a dozen comets. He studied at Vanderbilt University, where he obtained a degree at the age of 30 and earned a teaching post at the observatory. Barnard also discovered-visually- a fifth moon of Jupiter, Almathea. He also discovered the second closest star to Earth, now called Barnard’s star.
Edward Emerson Barnard was known for his photographs of galaxies, especially after joining the University of Chicago's Yerkes Observatory. Each image took many hours of exposure. While clear skies in California made observations easy, in Wisconsin,…
[Barnard Leaning against Telescope at Lick Observatory, Mt. Hamilton, CA]
Barnard moved to California in 1887 to inaugurate the new observatory at Mount Hamilton near San Jose. He discovered the first non-Galilean moon of Jupiter, Amalthea, in September 1892 over 275 years after Galileo's discoveries. Observatory staff…
[Barnard with Refractor Telescope at Lick Observatory, CA]
While at Lick Observatory, Barnard was the first astronomer to discover a comet using photgraphic plates. In 1889, he became the first astronomer to observe the eclipse of Saturn's satellite Iapetus.
[Edward Emerson Barnard with J.W. Braid and P.R.Calvert]
Barnard (center) worked for a Nashville photography studio from an early age. His boss and mentor J.W. Braid (on his left) gave him his first telescope. P.R. Calvert (on his right) introduced Barnard to his sister Rhoda; they married in 1881.
[Jupiter Camera, Nashville, TN]
Edward Emerson Barnard worked in John H. Van Stavoren's Nashville photography studio as a nine-year-old. He had to keep this solar camera, designed to make life-sized enlargements on silvered paper from negatives, directed on the sun to avoid setting…
[Total Eclipse of the Sun, June 8, 1918]
Barnard pioneered astrophotography as well as discovering 15 comets and the first non-Galilean moon of Jupiter. His astronomical photographs were published posthumously as A Photographic Atlas of Selected Regions of the Milky Way (1927) completed by…
While at Lick Observatory, Barnard was the first astronomer to discover a comet using photographic plates. In 1889, he became the first astronomer to observe the eclipse of Saturn's satellite Iapetus. His pioneering astrophotography and discovery of…
Discovery of the Fifith Moon of Jupiter
Edward Emerson Barnard’s discovery of the fifth satellite of Jupiter in 1892 set off a firestorm of accolades in the press and in astronomy circles. It was the first planetary satellite discovery since Asaph Hall had discovered the moons of Mars in…
Region of the Pleiades
The Pleiades star cluster is located in the constellation Taurus. Also known as the Seven Sisters or M45, this group of stars is most visible in November when they can be seen from dusk until dawn. The name probably derives from the Ancient Greek…
[Letter to Joseph S. Carels]
Joseph S. Carels, an assistant postmaster in Nashville who befriended Edward Emerson Barnard as a child in Nashville, remained a friend of the noted astronomer throughout his life. A congratulatory letter to Barnard on his discovery of Amalthea…