Once upon a Time in America
In comparison to Great Britain and Germany, progress in telescope making in the New World was painfully slow. Indeed, as we have seen, the largest refractor in the United States before 1830 was a 5-in. Dollond achromat. The paucity of public observatories across the nation in the early nineteenth century is evidence enough that the country had not yet fully exploited her penchant for astronomical adventure. America needed a great lens maker, and it found its answer in a Massachusetts portrait painter named Alvan Clark.