February Star Notes Newsletter

Harvard College Observatory. Image found in a Sarah Breslin notebook (phaedra0722)

Hi everyone,

Sam and Nico here, the Star Notes researchers. Hope you’re all doing well! Thanks to your efforts, we’ve finished going through all of the notebooks of Henrietta Hill Swope! As you might have seen from our last newsletter, we have a new format where we’re only working on one astronomer at the time. The current astronomer that we have up is Sarah Breslin. So once her notebooks have all been tagged for plates, we won’t be going back to her notebooks. Now is your chance to work on her notebooks!

Thanks to everyone who attended our January Office Hours. Our next Office Hours will be held on Tuesday, February 9th at 2PM EST. This month, we’ll be talking about the DASCH database, or the Digital Access to a Sky Century at Harvard. We will be showing how to search plates in the database, along with other research tips. We’ll be on Zoom for an hour to answer questions and chat. You can stop by anytime during the hour. Register here for the Zoom link! 

We have another resource available for volunteers. While the Talk Boards are searchable, we totally understand that it can be difficult to find the answer to your questions. So we’re created this guide for questions that have come up once or twice, but we haven’t added to the Field Guide or Tutorials because they’ve only come up once or twice. This is a living document, so we will be adding to it as time goes on. 

We wanted to announce that we’ll be having a special event to acknowledge the second year of our project. On Tuesday, February 23rd we’ll be having an event called Mysteries in the Sky. We will be putting up ‘mystery batches’ for that entire day that do not include the names of the astronomers or the PHaEDRA ID numbers. Volunteers will be able to use the Talk boards to guess which astronomers they were able to work on. After the end of the event, we will share which astronomers were in each batch. 

Lasty, if you are an undergraduate student, the Smithsonian Women’s History Initiative is holding a paid, virtual internship program this summer. Three of these internships have to do with women in astronomy! Click here to learn more! As always, if you have any questions for us, or if there’s anything that we can do to help, you can contact us or find us over on the Talk boards.

Sam and Nico

Star Notes Team 

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