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Reflections on the Astronomy of GlasgowA story of some 500 years$
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David Clarke

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780748678891

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748678891.001.0001

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The Astronomical Society of Glasgow

The Astronomical Society of Glasgow

(p.299) Chapter 10 The Astronomical Society of Glasgow
Reflections on the Astronomy of Glasgow

David Clarke

Edinburgh University Press

Local interest in astronomy has always been strong in Glasgow. This chapter covers stories of public movements of 1808 and 1836 both leading to the building of two observatories. Towards the end of this same century (1889), Glasgow became the centre of Scottish amateur activities with ~200 members of the West of Scotland Branch within the parent British Astronomical Association. One of its founders (Baillie John Dansken) had a private observatory in the West End. During World War II, the society continued to flourish under the blacked-out dark skies of the era. By 1954, developments within the general amateur community allowed for the regional organisation to transform and adopt the more local title of the Astronomical Society of Glasgow (ASG). In recognition of its contributions made to the amateur scene, the International Astronomical Union designated asteroid No: 5805 with the name ‘Glasgow’, the announcement coinciding with the centenary of the Society in 1989. In addition to its regular meetings, the ASG engages with the general public by offering day-time and night-time observing events under the umbrella of the ‘Public Understanding of Science’ in the Botanic Gardens with the titles of ‘Sun Over the Botanics’ and ‘Stars Over the Botanics’.

Keywords:   Asteroid ‘Glasgow’, Amateur astronomy, West of Scotland branch of the BAA, Baillie John Dansken, Botanic Gardens, Public Understanding of Science

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