The collection comprises of correspondence regarding the British National Antarctic Expedition, 1901-1904 (leader Robert Falcon Scott) and testimonials for Ernest Henry Shackleton regarding the Royal Scottish Geographical Society.
Sir William Huggins collection
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- ReferenceGB 15 Sir William Huggins
- Dates of Creation1901-1903
- Name of Creator
- Language of MaterialEnglish.
- Physical DescriptionCorrespondence (circa 5 leaves)
Scope and Content
Administrative / Biographical History
William Huggins was born in 1824 in London. He was educated at the City of London School and under private tutors. In 1854, he joined the Royal Astronomical Society and two years later, built a private observatory at Tulse Hill, London. Using a spectroscope, a new instrument that he and William Allen Miller had devised, Huggins began to study the chemical constitution of stars, proving that some nebulae consist of luminous gas.
In 1866, Huggins made the first spectroscopic observation of a nova, discovering that it was enveloped in blazing hydrogen. He applied the Doppler effect to the measurement of stellar motions in the line of sight. In 1875, he adapted the gelatin dry-plate for making astronomical photographs; making possible exposures of any desired length, and thereafter, pioneered the combined use of spectroscopy and photography in observational astronomy. Between 1900 and 1906, Huggins served as president of the Royal Society in London. He was knighted in 1897 and was awarded many honours throughout his life. He died in 1910 in London.
The correspondence and testimonials are arranged alphabetically by recipient.
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Anyone wishing to consult material should ensure they note the entire MS reference and the name of the originator.
The term holograph is used when the item is wholly in the handwriting of the author. The term autograph is used when the author has signed the item.
Descriptions compiled by N. Boneham, Assistant Archivist with assistance from R. Stancombe and reference to Robert Keith Headland Antarctic Chronology, unpublished corrected revision of Chronological list of Antarctic expeditions and related historical events, (1 December 2001) Cambridge University Press (1989) ISBN 0521309034 and Dictionary of National Biography, second supplement, volume 2, Smith, Elder & Co. London (1912) and info please and Encyclopedia
Other Finding Aids
Clive Holland Manuscripts in the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, England - a catalogue, Garland Publishing New York and London (1982) ISBN 0824093941.
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