Randall Rosenfeld is the archivist and historian of the Royal astronomical society of Canada,
and he made a very interesting observation in his presentation this past Saturday at the
David Dunlap Observatory (DDO).
He gave credit due to a great lady in Canada's history, the late Jessie Donalda Dunlap,
who was the widow of David Dunlap, whose namesake is the DDO.
First of all, remember that DDO was built around the time of the depression.
So you can imagine that money was scarce at the time, and most banks would likely
considered the financing of an observatory to likely be a frivolous matter at the time.
So, Jessie Dunlap really did not have too donate the funds to build the observatory, but the
fact that she did, does indeed make her a "great lady of science", at least in Canada anyway.
A tremendous contribution to science, which allowed the confirmation and discovery
of the first black hole, Cygnus X-1 .
Of course, none of this would have happened if it had not been for Clarence Chant,
founder and director of the DDO who worked tirelessly in convincing Jessie Dunlap to
pledge and donate the funds.
And who exactly was David Dunlap?
He was a lawyer, who made a great deal of money, in the area of Timmins, in mining.
Having attended several lectures by Chant on astronomy, he had discussed the possibility
of contributing towards the cause, and then his untimely death prevented that from
And if David Dunlap were alive to day, and came into our store looking for his first
telescope, as an interested amateur astronomer what might we recommend to him?
Well, perhaps one of these:
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