Skip to main content

Centennial Timeline

1596-08-13: Variability of Mira discovered by David Fabricius

1857-01-01: Stillman Masterman, "Observations of Algol-Minimum" Read More...

1871-01-02: Anne Sewell Young born Read More...

1873-01-11: William Tyler Olcott born Read More...

1878-01-01: S. C. Chandler publishes first of three articles on variable star observing

1881-01-20: Leon Campbell born

1888-09-06: S. C. Chandler's first catalogue of variable stars

1893-08-02: S. C. Chandler's second catalogue of variable stars

1894-09-01: P. S. Yendell, "Suggestions to observers of variable stars"

1897-07-08: S. C. Chandler's third catalogue of variable stars Read More...

1899-01-03: Leon Campbell hired as an assistant at Harvard College Observatory

1900-02-13: Leon Campbell, epsilon Aurigae, first observation

1902-01-27: Margaret Walton (Mayall) born Read More...

1902-06-16: William Tyler Olcott and Clara Eunice Hyde are wed

1905-08-21: Helen Lewis Thomas born, wrote on early history of variable stars

1906-02-21: E. C. Pickering proposes use of standardized photographic charts

1906-12-12: E. C. Pickering thanks Helen Swartz for her latest variable star observations

1907-04-12: Dorrit Hoffleit born Read More...

1910-01-23: Olcott's first variable star observation, Mira

1911-02-01: E. C. Pickering sends out list of LPVs in need of observation Read More...

1911-03-01: Olcott publishes first article about variable stars for amateurs

1911-06-29: E. C. Pickering urges use of uniform observing interval and format

1911-10-04: W. T. Olcott writing on behalf of HCO, asks Harriet Bigelow of Smith College to send variable star observations to him

1911-10-10: AAVSO Founded by William Tyler Olcott, Secretary

1911-10-12: Giovanni Lacchini, Italy, first observation, R UMa

1911-10-29: W. T. Olcott thanks Helen M. Swartz for agreeing to join with the AAVSO to popularize variable star observing

1912-02-01: A. J. Cannon's translation of part 1 of F. W. A. Argelander's "The variable stars", published in 1844, appears in Popular Astronomy Read More...

1912-02-02: Charles McAteer, Pennsylvania, first observation, S CMi Read More...

1912-03-01: F. W. A. Argelander's "The variable stars" part 2, appears in *Popular Astronomy* Read More...

1912-03-03: Henrietta S. Levitt, period-luminosity relation Read More...

1912-04-01: F. W. A. Argelander's "The variable stars" part 3, appears in *Popular Astronomy* Read More...

1912-10-28: E. C. Pickering accepts AAVSO's first use of blueprint charts

1913-03-01: Clinton B. Ford born Read More...

1913-11-22: First recorded outburst of WZ Sge Read More...

1914-04-08: First Spring meeting, held in New York City

1915-10-01: Caroline E. Furness publishes *Introduction to the Study of Variable Stars*

1915-11-21: First Annual meeting, held at Harvard College Observatory

1918-03-01: Leslie Peltier, Ohio, first observation, R Leo Read More...

1918-11-15: AAVSO Incorporated in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

1919-02-03: Edward C. Pickering, HCO Director, dies

1919-11-08: The AAVSO is given use of a room for its HQ at HCO

1921-06-07: S. C. Hunter returns from France where he spread word about the AAVSO Read More...

1922-09-16: 6-inch Post Memorial Telescope installed at AAVSO HQ

1924-04-15: First issue of *Variable Comments*

1924-12-15: Leon Campbell, Recording Secretary; W. T. Olcott, Corresponding Secretary

1928-06-02: Clinton B. Ford joins the AAVSO at age 15

1931-10-16: Leon Campbell's title changed to "Recorder"; named Pickering Memorial Astronomer at Harvard College Observatory

1931-10-16: E. C. Pickering Memorial Endowment established at HCO

1932-05-07: Walter Scott Houston, Joseph W. Meek, and Leslie C. Peltier motor from the midwest to attend Spring meeting in Maryland Read More...

1932-09-30: Prof. Ernest Brown of Yale at a loss to explain change of seasons to W. T. Olcott; "Pretty good for a Prof." Olcott writes to L. Campbell

1933-06-06: Olcott and Campbell discuss "offering a merit prize to members who excell" Read More...

1934-03-02: Reginald De Kock, South Africa, first observation, R Car

1934-05-29: Edward Halbach, Wisconsin, first observation, SS Cyg Read More...

1934-12-13: J. Prentice discovers Nova Herculis

1935-11-18: F. Lancaster Hiett, Virginia, first observation, omi Cet

1935-11-23: William Albrecht, Wisconsin, first observation, RS Aur

1936-06-29: Last observations sent by Olcott, Nova Lac, comet Peltier, and SS Cygni

1936-07-06: William Tyler Olcott dies Read More...

1936-10-15: Charles W. Elmer, Secretary

1936-10-17: 25th Anniversary meeting, held at Harvard College Observatory

1937-05-02: Cyrus Fernald, Maine, first observation, R Leo

1937-10-15: David W. Rosebrugh, Secretary

1940-06-01: Spring meeting held at University of Toronto

1942-11-28: Edward Oravec, New York, first observation, T Cep

1943-01-02: Janet A. Mattei born Read More...

1943-01-17: Albert Jones, New Zealand, first observation, CP Pup

1944-10-06: Solar Division formed

1944-12-11: Tom Cragg, California, first observation, R And

1945-05-01: First Solar observing manual published

1945-10-05: Herbert M. Harris, Secretary

1946-03-03: AAVSO's 1 millionth observation by William Holt of Maine

1948-10-16: C. B. Ford, Secretary

1948-12-10: Wayne Lowder, New York, first observation, W Cas

1949-01-29: HCO honors Leon Campbell's 50th year of service

1949-10-15: Margaret W. Mayall, Recorder

1949-11-01: Margaret W. Mayall named Pickering Memorial Astronomer at Harvard College Observatory

1950-01-30: Arne A. Henden born Read More...

1951-05-10: Clara Olcott dies

1951-05-10: Leon Campbell dies Read More...

1951-08-22: Danie Overbeek, South Africa, first observation, W Pav

1952-07-01: AAVSO "Variable Star Notes" first published in JRASC Read More...

1952-07-31: "AE Aquarii Month" first amateur-professional collaboration organized by Mayall and Ashbrook, concludes Read More...

1952-09-01: HCO's Shapley retires

1953-01-20: AAVSO's evaluation report sent to HCO

1953-02-16: HCO report on future value of the AAVSO

1953-06-10: AAVSO's 1.5 millionth observation by Curtis Anderson of Minnesota

1953-10-05: Harvard College declares variable stars no longer important

1954-01-02: AAVSO vacates its Headquarters at HCO, moves to Brattle St.

1954-01-04: The AAVSO removes its 6-inch Post Memorial Telescope from HCO Read More...

1954-02-08: First fundraising effort begins

1954-04-30: Cyrus Fernald, Maine, 75,000th observation

1954-07-01: Pickering Endowment no longer supports the AAVSO

1955-01-29: AAVSO receives its first one-year NSF grant

1955-05-28: Members inspect latest Fecker Co. PEP equipment in Pittsburgh Read More...

1955-10-20: "Inner Sanctum" category created to encourage observations at minimum

1955-10-22: First meeting held outside of Cambridge, in Springfield, Mass.

1955-12-15: Leon Campbell, *Studies of Long Period Variables* published

1956-05-02: Elizabeth O. Waagen born

1956-10-20: Margaret W. Mayall's title changed from "Recorder" to "Director"

1957-09-15: F. Bateson of RASNZ meets with Margaret Mayall to discuss plans for future cooperation

1958-04-01: Margaret Mayall is presented the Annie J. Cannon Award by the AAS Read More...

1959-04-01: Walter Scott Houston publishes "The Great Moons of Mars Hoax" Read More...

1959-06-12: Georg Comello, The Netherlands, first observation, chi Cyg

1960-11-22: The Mayalls host the Menzels for tea

1961-08-15: Anne Sewall Young dies

1961-10-13: 50th Anniversary meeting, held at Harvard College Observatory

1962-01-28: Marvin Baldwin, Indiana, first observation, TX Psc

1962-07-26: AAVSO's 2 millionth observation by Leslie Peltier of Ohio Read More...

1963-04-05: John Bortle, New York, first observation, V533 Her

1963-12-31: AAVSO is asked to correlate observations with Stratoscope II baloon flights

1965-02-10: Cragg and Bornhurst observe lack of eclipse in U Gem at minima Read More...

1965-05-22: "Dwarf Novae as Binary Systems" by L. Bornhurst read at Spring meeting

1965-07-01: The AAVSO finds a new HQ location at 187 Concord Avenue Read More...

1967-06-23: AAVSO's 2.5 millionth observation by Carolyn Hurless of Ohio Read More...

1968-04-05: Gerry Samolyk, Wisconsin, first observation, RS CrB

1970-11-01: AAVSO Circular, first issue

1971-07-03: AAVSO's 3 millionth observation by Ernst Mayer of Ohio

1972-09-15: JAAVSO vol. 1, nr. 1, published

1972-11-24: Steven Shape, Maine, first observation, omi Cet

1973-10-15: First computer cards of AAVSO observations keypunched

1973-10-31: Janet A. Mattei, Director

1974-10-03: Warren Morrison, Canada, first observation, Z UMa

1975-03-23: Peter Williams, Australia, first observation, VW Hyi

1975-04-12: AAVSO's 3.5 millionth observation by Paul Goodwin of Louisiana

1976-10-30: Sandro Baroni , Milan , Italy first observation , NQ Vul (near Brocchi's cluster)

1978-02-23: Gerry Dyck, Massachusetts, first observation, T Gem Read More...

1978-02-28: Paul Vedrenne, France, first observation, R Lyn

1978-03-04: Michel Verdenet, France, first observation, RW Aur

1978-12-01: WZ Sge, cataclysmic variable, 3rd recorded outburst

1979-03-26: AAVSO's 4 millionth observation by Philip Steffey of California

1981-04-13: AAVSO's 4.5 millionth observation by Dietmar Bohme of Germany

1981-12-15: Last month of data processed using punch cards

1982-01-15: First month of data processed using 8-inch diskettes Read More...

1983-06-09: Eddy Muyllaert, Belgium, first observation, SS Cyg

1983-10-21: AAVSO's 5 millionth observation by Paul Vedrenne of France

1985-10-15: AAVSO Monograph 1, SS Cygni, published

1985-10-31: AAVSO purchases 25 Birch Street building

1985-12-29: AAVSO's 5.5 millionth observation by George Knight of Maine

1986-01-03: Discovery of nova-like object, V840 Cen by Bill Liller Read More...

1986-03-07: First Finance Committee meeting at 25 Birch Street HQ

1986-08-06: Dedication of new AAVSO HQ at 25 Birch Street

1986-08-06: Dr. Riccardo Giacconi, STSI, announces amateur time to be available on Hubble Space Telescope

1986-08-09: 75th Anniversary meeting, held at Harvard College Observatory and AAVSO HQ

1987-02-23: SN 1987a in the Large Magellanic Cloud, brightest extragalactic supernova in history, magnitude 5.1 Read More...

1987-07-01: Janet Mattei gives her first address to the BAA in London Read More...

1988-01-28: AAVSO's 6 millionth observation by Seiichi Sakuma of Japan

1989-10-02: Gary Poyner, England, first observation, T Cas

1990-07-24: First International meeting of the AAVSO, Brussels Read More...

1990-12-02: AAVSO participates in ASTRO-1 Space Shuttle Mission Read More...

1991-10-25: First AAVSO CCD workshop

1992-01-17: AAVSO's 7 millionth observation by Martti Perala of Finland

1992-09-23: Clinton B. Ford dies

1992-10-23: Martha Hazen, Secretary

1993-01-22: Janet Mattei, Van Biesbroeck Award

1993-09-13: AAVSO's 7.5 millionth observation by Stanislaw Swierczynski of Poland

1993-10-13: Futures Study Group convenes

1994-08-01: First AAVSO website pages are posted

1995-04-19: AAVSO's 8 millionth observation by Gary Poyner of England

1995-05-17: Rod Stubbings, Australia, first observation, R Cen Read More...

1995-10-09: JD 2450000 celebrated by HQ staff

1995-12-06: Margaret W. Mayall dies

1996-09-18: AAVSO's 8.5 millionth observation by Robert Johanns of The Netherlands

1996-09-26: First post to the AAVSO-Discussion e-mail list Read More...

1996-11-01: Session on Mira stars at 85th Annual Meeting

1997-03-07: Dorrit Hoffleit 90th Birthday Symposium

1997-05-26: Second International meeting of the AAVSO, Sion-St. Luc Read More...

1997-08-06: Helen L. Thomas, variable star historian, dies

1998-02-09: AAVSO's 9 millionth observation by Ronald Zissell of Massachusetts Read More...

1999-06-12: AAVSO's 9.5 millionth observation by Ferenc Puskas of Hungary

1999-06-15: Hands-On Astrophysics published Read More...

2000-04-12: First High-Energy Astrophysics Workshop Read More...

2000-10-23: AAVSO's 10 millionth observation by Miroslav Komorous of Canada

2002-01-10: AAVSO's 10.5 millionth observation by Jean Gunther of France Read More...

2002-06-30: Third International meeting of the AAVSO, Big Island, Hawaii

2003-04-28: AAVSO's 11 millionth observation by Gary Poyner of England

2003-09-06: Elizabeth O. Waagen, Interim Director

2004-03-22: Janet A. Mattei dies Read More...

2004-04-17: AAVSO's 11.5 millionth observation by David Weier of Wisconsin

2004-11-14: AAVSO's 12 millionth observation by Richard Huziak of Canada

2005-01-06: Discovery of V838 Mon Read More...

2005-03-01: Arne A. Henden, Director Read More...

2005-09-09: AAVSO's 12.5 millionth observation by Vance Petriew of Canada

2006-02-02: AAVSO's 13 millionth observation by Tom Krajci of Virginia Read More...

2006-03-15: Beta testing begins for VSX Read More...

2006-03-17: First new variable star submitted to VSX (VSX J023253.2+463034 by Mark Munkacsy) Read More...

2006-05-10: The AAVSO Variable Star Index (VSX) goes online

2006-12-23: Martha Hazen dies

2006-12-27: The AAVSO purchases former Sky & Telescope building for its HQ

2007-01-25: First recorded outburst of DW Cnc Read More...

2007-02-02: Move to new HQ at 49 Bay State Road

2009-05-19: AAVSO/SAS joint meeting Read More...

2009-06-04: Citizen Sky Project Launched Read More...

2009-09-01: Citizen Sky project begins

2011-02-19: AAVSO International Database Reaches 20 Million Observations Read More...

Keywords:
AAVSO 49 Bay State Rd. Cambridge, MA 02138 aavso@aavso.org 617-354-0484