Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers

2014 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Hockey, Virginia Trimble, Thomas R. Williams, Katherine Bracher, Richard A. Jarrell, Jordan D. MarchéII, JoAnn Palmeri, Daniel W. E. Green

Stokley, James

  • Jordan D. MarchéII
Reference work entry

BornPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, 19 May 1900

DiedLa Jolla, California, USA, 29 December 1989

American planetarium pioneer James Stokley, son of James and Irene (néeStulb) Stokley, received a bachelor’s degree (1922) in education and a master’s degree (1924) in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. After graduating, he taught biology and physics at Philadelphia’s Central High School and wrote articles for local newspapers. An opportunity to cover the Centenary Dinner of the Franklin Institute in 1924 as a news reporter proved a turning point in his life. At the dinner, Stokley made contacts that led to his employment by Science Service in Washington, District of Columbia, the following year. In 1927, Stokley visited planetariums in Berlin and Jena, Germany, returning with the conviction that he would one day become a planetarium director. Although he had risen to the position of astronomical editor with Science Service in 1931, his earlier ambition was realized when he...

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Selected References

  1. Anon. (Dec. 1936). “Who’s Who in the Franklin Institute: James Stokley.” Institute News: 4.Google Scholar
  2. Marché II, Jordan D. (2005). Theaters of Time and Space: American Planetaria, 1930–1970. New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Menke, David H. (1987). “James Stokley and the Fels Planetarium.” Planetarian 16, no. 3: 39–43.Google Scholar
  4. Stokley, James (1936). Stars and Telescopes. New York: Harper and Brothers.Google Scholar
  5. — (1937). “Planetarium Operation.” Scientific Monthly 45: 307–316.Google Scholar
  6. — (1961). Atoms to Galaxies: An Introduction to Modern Astronomy. New York: Ronald Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jordan D. MarchéII
    • 1
  1. 1.University of WisconsinMadisonUSA