Submitted by EBriggs on Tue, 2012-05-29 11:53
Named in memory of John A. Brashear (1840-1920), maker of astronomical telescopes and scientific instruments, popularizer of astronomy and university administrator. Brashear contributed much to the siting, design and fundraising for the Allegheny Observatory, and his firm constructed its 0.76-m refractor and 0.79-m Keeler reflector. He figured the 0.4-m photographic doublet with which Max Wolf discovered many minor planets. He also had connections with the Lowell Observatory, notably in the design and construction of a fast spectrograph that was ultimately used to record the first recessional velocities of galaxies, and through the provision of a 0.13-m objective used in Lowell's first search for a transneptunian planet. Citation provided by T. P. Kohman and H. L. Giclas following a suggestion by Kohman on behalf of the Amateur Astronomers Asociation of Pittsburgh.
Dr. and Mrs. Brashear spent later summers at their cottage on Urania Isle in Lake Muskoka, Ontario. Mrs. Brashear passed there in September 1910. The family's 48-foot steam launch Phoebe, named after Mrs. Brashear, has been restored and is on display at the Kingston Pump House Steam Museum, where it was originally built in 1914.
Dr. Brashear was elected an honorary fellow of the Toronto Astronomical Society on 1901-10-01, at the conclusion of a year in which his firm was contracted to finish the 38-cm and other optics for the new Dominion Observatory in Ottawa.
Reference: MPC 25977