Edison and the Eclipse That Enlightened America

When (times in MT)
Wed, Jan 31 2024, 2pm - 1 hour
Event Type
David Baron
Science Writer
Building & Room
CG1-3131 & Virtual

On July 29, 1878, a total solar eclipse crossed Colorado and Wyoming. The astronomical event lured many of the era’s great scientists to the western frontier because it offered a rare opportunity to solve longstanding riddles of the sun and solar system. Based on his five years of original research, Boulder author David Baron tells the tale of this influential event in American science and shares the stories of some remarkable people who witnessed it. Among the prominent eclipse chasers in 1878 were Vassar astronomer Maria Mitchell, who headed an all-female expedition to Denver to show what women could do in science, and a young Thomas Edison, who after observing the eclipse in Wyoming soon lit the world with his most famous invention.

About the Speaker

David Baron is an award-winning author, science journalist, and broadcaster. For many years he worked in public radio, and if you’re a longtime NPR listener you might remember his voice from All Things Considered and Morning Edition as far back as the 1980s and 1990s. He moved from Boston to Boulder in 1998 to become a Ted Scripps Fellow in Environmental Journalism at CU, which led to his first book, “The Beast in the Garden,” which tells a true story about mountain lions and people here on the Front Range. Today, he'll talk about his 2017 book, “American Eclipse,” which received the annual book prize from the American Institute of Physics and is being republished next month in advance of the total solar eclipse on April 8 of this year. I should add that David is himself an avid eclipse chaser. He has witnessed eight total solar eclipses on five continents. And I’ll let him take it from there...