lh_27i

Lamont-Hussey Refractor

69 cm  (27 inch)

LHussey_69c27i_-02t

 

Index:

Summary; History; Current; Technical; Sources; Links; Gallery:

In brief

Important  Contributions:

Description:

  • The telescope was a refractor with a 27-inch lens. The lens was supplied by Jena in Europe and was of exceptional quality and had great resolution power. It was the biggest refractor in the Southern Hemisphere when it was installed in 1928. The telescope was temporarily installed on its base just outside Detroit
    Observatory of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. It was taken to South Africa in  November 1926. It was primarily used for the discovery and measurement  of double stars.
  • When the Observatory was closed down Michigan University gave the building and telescope away free of charge: the telescope  fell into the hands of the Municipality and the building went to PACOFS. PACOFS took good care of the building and  is still maintaining it. The telescope met a more unfortunate fate, though it is still salvageable. The telescope consisted  out of a tube (consisting of two segments), a counter weight and a foot piece. These parts are currently housed in the Fire Station Museum in Bloemfontein. The optics of the telescope went back to Michigan University where it is currently in safekeeping.
  • Part of the Bloemfontein branch of A.S.S.A. is an organisation called the “Friends of Boyden”. Their members has done stirling work in tracking the individual parts of the telescope and moving it to Ehrlichpark Fire Station Museum. For more information click here.

Historical Background

Owner:
192? – 1972 University of Michigan.

Where  Located:

  • Detroit Observatory of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • 1926 – 1972 Lamont-Hussey, Bloemfontein

Current Information

Present  Location:

  • The tube is housed at the Fire Station Museum in Bloemfontein
  • The  optics are held at Michigan University

Owner:

Status:
Unserviceable

Condition:
Telescope taken apart and pieces of it is now at Fire Station Museum.

Technical  Details

Type: Refractor
Aperture: 27 inch (68.58 cm)
Focal Length:
Lens:
Mounting:
Attachments:
Manufacturer: Lens made by Jena in Europe, and was of exceptional  quality and had great resolution power.
Operational History:
Building: The Lamont-Hussey Observatory is now used as a theatre.  The building is located on Naval Hill, a nature reserve on a hill in the middle of the City of Bloemfontein.

Sources

Documentation:

Pictorial  Sources:

Bibliography:

  • Moore,  P. & Collins, P., Astronomy in Southern Africa, p (General  Source)
  • Smits  P. A Brief History of Astronomy in Southern Africa. (Unpublished).

Links

Related Links:
Ehrlich Park Fire Station Museum.

Gallery

LHussey_69c27i_-01r
The 27 inch Lamont Refractor set up at Ann Arbor.
Source: A.S.S.A. Symposium 2002: Paper 05 Penning: The Lamont-Hussey Observatory 1927- 1974

LHussey_69c27i_-02
Early photo of the 27 inch Jena Telescope mounted at Lamont-Hussey Observatory.
Source: A.S.S.A. Symposium 2002: Paper 05 Penning: The Lamont-Hussey Observatory 1927- 1974

LHussey_69c27i_-03
Source: A.S.S.A. Symposium 2002: Paper 05 Penning: The Lamont-Hussey Observatory 1927- 1974

LHussey_69c27i_Tube-01r
Found in a field alongside an aircraft hangar at a fire brigade station in Bloemfontein. The counterweight assembly in the foreground with the lower part of the telescope tube in the background. For more information see Ehrlich Park Fire Station Museum.
Source: A.S.S.A. Symposium 2002: Paper 05 Penning: The Lamont-Hussey Observatory 1927- 1974.