The following is a guest post by Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, Prints & Photographs Division.
This week’s anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing provides a perfect opportunity to explore our holdings of lunar photography in the Prints & Photographs Division.
From the medium’s beginnings, the moon fascinated photographers as both a subject of scientific inquiry and as poetic muse. Early efforts to photograph the moon were often met with failure due to the low sensitivity of available materials.
Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre attempted photographs in his eponymous process around 1838 that were described as “fuzzy and low in details,” by his advocate, François Arago. Successful photographs of the moon using the daguerreotype process would not be made until over a dozen years later, when the celebrated Boston portrait photographer John Adams Whipple sought the assistance of Harvard astronomer William Cranch Bond and his son, George Phillips Bond.
Using the college observatory’s Great Refractor telescope, they captured the sphere in its waxing gibbous phase on March 14, 1851.
At the time of this writing, at least 120 people have been confirmed dead because of severe flooding in Western Europe.
It is tragically likely that, when this story is over, the number will be significantly higher. A German weather service (DWD) spokesman told CNN that in some areas there has not been this much rainfall in 100 years.
These extreme weather events are inextricably linked to climate change, politicians and experts have noted.
But there is another culprit, one above, that is also affecting the weather: a “wobble” in the orbit of the Moon. Indeed, only days before the flooding, a study in the journal Nature Climate Change by scientists from NASA and the University of Hawaii warned that the Earth may experience record flooding in the mid-2030s because of changes in the Moon’s orbit.
The moon will look most spectacular just as it appears above the eastern horizon early Sunday evening.
Other names for this month’s full moon include the crow, crust, sap, and sugar moon.
By some definitions, it’s a supermoon, meaning that it’s a bit closer to the Earth than during an average full moon.
Get ready for the full “worm” moon, which will rise Sunday evening, March 28, in the eastern sky.The name likely refers to the earthworms that appear in the soil as the weather gets warmer, inviting hungry birds to feed on them.