View Full Version here: : Sir Thomas Brisbane
13-12-2006, 01:50 PM
Sir Thomas Makdougall Brisbane, (July 23, 1773 – January 27, 1860), soldier, colonial Governor and astronomer, was born at Largs in Scotland.
You can read about him here:
He was governor of NSW from the end of 1821 to the end of 1825.
In 1998 I visited his first and third observatories at Largs and Kelso in Scotland.
Largs in on the west coast of Scotland and Kelso is in the south east area of Scotland.
I have also been to his second observatory in Parramatta many times.
The instruments from Parramatta Observatory are now on display at the Sydney Observatory.
Here are some pictures.
Three of these images came from Sir Thomas Brisbane:Comets Over The Colony by Glenda Thompson.
THE SIX MAIN INSTRUMENTS were:
1. A 5.5-foot transit instrument by E. Troughton, aperture 3.75 inches, used to find RA.
2. A 2-foot mural circle with a 2 foot telescope by E. Troughton, normally used to find declination but used by Dunlop to also find RA.
3. A 46-inch equatorial achromatic telescope by Banks aperture 3.25 inches under the southern dome.
4. A 16-inch repeating circle by Reichenbach under the northern dome of the observatory.
5. A sidereal clock by Hardy.
6. A mean time clock by Breguet
13-12-2006, 03:44 PM
Yes the Scots of old were a tough, hardy and highly inventive lot, as for the scottish nation of today..... well it is still pretty.
Great info and reading in those links Glen i didnt know that much about him previously, nice series of photos from you? as well thanks for sharing them.
13-12-2006, 03:47 PM
With your encyclopaedic knowledge of all things astronomical, I reckon you could make telescope GoTo systems obsolete! :scared:
In fact, you could hire yourself out as a “Human GoTo” interface device at astro camps! ;)
13-12-2006, 04:13 PM
Is McNelley Scottish? :)
My grandfather was Scottish too. He was a sheep shearer in SA.
13-12-2006, 04:36 PM
Yes the sirname is Hebridean Glen, like the Island of Barra and that area off the west coast, i did visit there in my early twenties but decided they were all to mad to be relatives of any real kind..lol
A lot of Australians have some scot in them, the highland clearances back in the 18 hundred and somethings were a very sad time for scotland, it broke the countries back finally and scattered them throughout the developing western world. I think the Cambell's have been forgiven for helping the redcoats achieve this by now though.
14-12-2006, 08:32 AM
There is more information at:
The Powerhouse Museum
The Sydney Obseravtory
22-12-2006, 07:31 AM
There is of course a lunar crater named after Sir Thomas too.
Not one of those great big showy craters of course, but it is about 44km's across - here on earth that would be a very large crater indeed!
22-12-2006, 10:11 PM
For further information, see the following site on Parramatta Obervatory and Sir Thomas Brisbane.
23-12-2006, 05:51 AM
Thanks for that.
I did mention Andrew James under Dunlop and Rumker.
There are no lunar craters named after Dunlop, Rumker or John Herschel.
A very interesting read Glen, thanks for posting the links.
31-12-2006, 06:36 AM
Do you have a spare $5500?
RICHARDSON, William A Catalogue of 7385 Stars, chiefly in the Southern Hemisphere. London, William Clowes & Sons. 1835
Quarto, with a frontispiece plan "Parramatta Observatory"; contemporary half calf, joints renewed; a few spots but overall a fine presentation copy. The first Australian astronomical work and the first attempt at recording the Southern Hemisphere skies since Lacaille's work done from the Cape of Good Hope during the 1750s. This superb association copy was presented to the Library of the Royal Society of Edinburgh by its former president, General Sir Thomas Makdougall Brisbane on 10 July 1856.
In 1822 Brisbane had established a private observatory behind Government House at Parramatta. Brisbane, who had succeeded Lachlan Macquarie as Governor of New South Wales, was a keen astronomer and brought with him to Australia two assistant astronomers, James Dunlop from Scotland and Charles Rumker from Germany, who was to become the colony's first Government astronomer. In 1828 the Royal Astronomical Society presented Brisbane with its Gold Medal, 'accompanied with the strongest expressions of our admiration for your patriotic and princely support to Astronomy in regions so remote... Your name will be identified with the future glories of that colony in the ages yet to come, as the father of her science...' (Under the Southern Cross, p. 20).
Under Brisbane's instructions, Rumker and Dunlop set about cataloguing the stars of the Southern Hemisphere as seen from the Observatory, and in just over two years made 40,000 observations of over 7000 stars. Their work was finally published in London in 1835 under the authorship of William Richardson of the Royal Observatory at Greenwich.
Ferguson, 2012. $A5500
Click here (http://www.hordern.com/stockimages/large/199406_456_01.jpg) to see an image of this item.
01-01-2007, 08:25 PM
Here is a painting by convict artist Lycett showing Parramatta in Brisbane's time. Government house is on the left and St John's church is just right of center. Dunlop's house is to the left of the church.
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