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BAA Journal 2019 December

From the BAA Archives

Journal issue: 2019 December
Pages: 360–360

Warren De la Rue (1815–1889) was a British astronomer, chemist and inventor, famous for his pioneering work in astronomical photography. Amongst his many accomplishments, he is known for some striking stereo cards that he made of the Moon (for more information, visit londonstereo.com/modern_stereos_moons.html).

In the BAA Archives there are two lovely wooden stereoscopes, shown here. These devices are of the type that were used to view lunar stereo cards produced by De la Rue. It seems appropriate to use lunar cards in this 50th anniversary year of the first manned lunar landing. My thanks to Eddie Carpenter for allowing the use of some of his stereo cards for this purpose.

Other people besides De la Rue made such cards. For further information, visit: physics.kenyon.edu/EarlyApparatus/Astronomy/Moon_Stereo/Moon_Stereo.html.

The pair of stereoscopes probably date from the late 19th century, but we have no further details on how they come to be in the Archives. Any information would be gratefully received.

John Chuter, Archivist

The above image has been adapted for the Journal from one of the lunar stereo cards referred to in the article, enabling the 3-D effect to be enjoyed without a viewer. Cross your eyes until three images are visible, then focus on the central one. Practice may be required if you are unused to the method. – Ed.

(Original photo by J. Chuter; processed for cross-eyed viewing by J. B. Taylor.)