Stargazers pp 31-31 | Cite as

Investigating Astronomy’s History

  • Norman Sperling
Conference paper


Amateur astronomers play an important role in historical astronomy and publish a wide range of studies. They can participate nearly as well as professional astronomers since neither are professional historians or archaeologists. Amateurs often restore old instruments and facilities, discovering clues to their design, manufacture and use that would not be noticed by non-astronomical historians.

Possible studies include histories of institutions and of astronomy in different countries, biographies, and evolution of ideas. Publications and manuscripts could be studied for matters of current and historical importance. Folklore (of all countries) should be recorded before it dies out, and the beliefs behind it examined. More study groups involving amateurs, professionals and others should be established.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Norman Sperling
    • 1
  1. 1.OaklandUSA

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