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Category: Collections

Copernicus: The Astronomer & the City

Tuesday February 19th
Pedro Raposo

Who’s that guy sitting on a pedestal greeting you as you walk up to the Adler Planetarium? It’s one the most prominent astronomers in the history of modern science, Nicolaus Copernicus! In honor of his 545th birthday, let’s dive into the history behind this statue & this astronomer’s legacy. When you approach the Adler Planetarium […]

The Midnight Sky: Familiar Notes on the Stars and Planets.

“Frederick J. Brown and the Milky Way” Online Exhibition

Friday February 8th
Megan Lothamer

The Adler Planetarium was established in Chicago in 1930. That means that we have 89 years worth of collections objects that have made their way into our midst. From astrolabes to works on paper, these objects are wrapped in inspiring stories, mysterious histories, and have fascinating origins. In the summer of 2018, the Adler Planetarium […]

Historic Imagining of Moon Travel- Taken from the Adler vault

A Conveyance to This Other World

Friday January 18th
Pedro Raposo

LUNAR MOUNTAINS AND VALLEYS In November 1609, Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) set out to study the Moon using a recent invention he had heard about a few months prior, and had been playing with ever since: the telescope. According to the principles of Aristotelian cosmology, which still prevailed at the time, the celestial bodies (including the […]

Earthrise- photo taken by Bill Anders on December 24, 1968

Sailing to the Moon and Back

Friday December 21st
Andrew Johnston

This December, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 8 mission to the Moon, one of the most amazing journeys of exploration in human history. This was the first time humans ever ventured away from Earth’s immediate vicinity, and the first time anyone saw both sides of the Moon with their own eyes. On […]

"We Choose to go to the Moon" - John F. Kennedy

Navigating to the Moon and Back: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 8

Tuesday December 11th
Megan Lothamer

It’s strange to imagine, but humans left the vicinity of the Earth for the first time just 50 years ago this month. The Apollo 8 flight was an incredible feat of exploration that required astronauts to navigate using sextants and radio signals. Highlights from this 6-day mission include the successful (and difficult) placement of the […]

Artefacts Conference 2018

“Relevance of Collections”—the Artefacts meeting comes to Chicago

Thursday December 6th
Pedro Raposo

For more than two decades now, the Artefacts consortium has been promoting an annual meeting that brings together museum professionals and scholars working with scientific and technological collections. This year’s meeting, the 23rd in the series, was hosted by the Adler Planetarium, under the theme “Relevance of Collections.” During the three days of Artefacts XXIII […]

Above: Junior members of CAS observing at the Adler’s rooftop in the context of Operation Moonwatch, c. 1957 (Adler Archives)

Chicago: A City of Stargazers

Monday October 22nd
Pedro Raposo

Chicago has long been a city of stargazers. And one way or another, all astronomical roads in Chicago have led to the Adler since it became the first planetarium in the Western Hemisphere in 1930. Here are a few stories, objects, and documents from our collections that remind us how the Adler has helped Chicagoans […]

Out of the pocket to outer space: The saga of a portable globe

Tuesday October 2nd
Pedro Raposo

You have certainly marveled at the space artifacts we have on display in the Mission Moon exhibition. But it might surprise you that one of the oldest objects in our collections to have flown to space is actually a 200-year-old pocket globe. In December 1999, it was taken aboard Space Shuttle Discovery during the mission […]


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