Reading Nature, Observing Science: Examining Material Practices in the Lick Observatory Archives and Kenneth S. Norris Papers

Barnard at the 6" Willard Lens

"On chilly or cold nights I wore an Esquimaux coat made of reindeer skin, and heavy rubber overshoes. Frequently, on bringing the eye to the telescope on such nights, a spark would discharge with a slight shock between the eye and the eyepiece. This was extremely annoying, and finally became so disagreeable that it was found convenient frequently to touch the metal of the instrument...the probable explanation of this phenomenon is that it is due to the fur coat and the insulation of the rubber overshoes, the body becoming electrically charged like a Leyden jar." - Barnard in "Photographs of the Milky Way and Comets," 1913

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