Lick Observatory

Lick Observatory, astronomical observatory located on Mt. Hamilton, Calif., near San Jose the first mountaintop observatory in the world, it was founded through gifts made by James Lick in 1874–75 and came under the direction of the Univ. of California in 1888 it is now run by the Univ. of California Observatories. The original telescopes at the observatory were a 12-in. (30.4-cm) refracting telescope (1881, since decommissioned) and a 36-in. (91.4-cm) refracting telescope (1888), second largest in the world after the 40-in. (101.6-cm) refractor at Yerkes Observatory . The principal research instrument now is a 120-in. (3-m) reflecting telescope that went into operation in 1960. Other equipment includes 39.4-in. (1-m) and 36-in. (91.4-cm) reflectors.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Astronomical Observatories

Browse By Subject