One of Denver’s greatest treasures, the University of Denver’s Chamberlin Observatory, celebrated 120 years of operation on Saturday July 19, 2014. Only a couple of cities in the world can boost having a facility like Chamberlin, and not many places you can go to look through a bigger telescope. Chamberlin has provided access to the public on a continuous basis since 1894.The massive 20 inch telescope is world class, and over the years provided hundreds of thousands people with views of the heavens.
The celebration included lectures, picture taking with period costumes by the telescope, and telescopes for solar viewing for visitors. Kids made safe solar viewers among other activities. The Denver Astronomical Society presented a check for $5000 to the Chamberlin Observatory Endowment Fund. Activities were concluded in the evening with observing through the observatories telescope and those of the members of the Denver Astronomical Society, Saturn being the star of the show.
It was also a time to reflect on Humphrey Barker Chamberlin, the man who made the observatory possible. Chamberlin was one of Denver’s wealthiest and prominent citizens in the 1890s. He was known as a good Christian gentlemen, sincere in his philanthropy and always ready to respond to human suffering. Like Horace Tabor, Chamberlin lost his fortune in the 1893 silver crash. He left Denver in 1894 and died in 1897 in his native England at the age of at the age 50.
Come visit the Chamberlin Observatory and take part of a Denver 120 year tradition. The observatory is open the public during open houses conducted one a month on Saturday evenings. Pubic nights are held most every Tuesday and Thursday by appointment. Minimal fees are charged. It is truly a memorable experience.
Wishing you clear skies