posted on Jan, 7 2008 @ 06:26 AM
A program on BBC Radio 3 this weekend just gone examined the letters written to the Mount Wilson observatory in California. The program focussed on
letters written at the beginning of the last century - shortly after the Observatory was built in 1904 - from people who claimed to know all about the
Universe without the need for a huge telescope.
Apart from being a fascinating program (which you can listen to here
for the next few
days) - one or two things stuck out for me.
One was the reference to a woman who had written to say that the reason we shouldn't fire rockets was because they might damage the "people in the
machines" that were up there.
The other was a woman who wrote in to say she didn't understand why she'd had no response from the astronomers she was writing to as she had all
this knowledge they didn't have - and that, specifically, she knew that "the sun was a magnet in 1908".
I recommend this for your listening pleasure - there were amateur space watchers out there way back when, and some of the knowledge they wrote about
was very mysterious indeed....