Cannon, Annie Jump, 1863-1941

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Annie Jump Cannon (1863-1941) was the first astronomer to systematically classify the stars. She classified stars according to their stellar spectra using a procedure set up by Williamina Fleming. She is credited with classifying 400,000 stellar bodies and discovering more than 300 variable stars, 5 novae, and one spectroscopic binary. After earning a B.S. at Wellesley College in 1884, she spent the next ten years both at home and travelling abroad. She returned to Wellesley in 1894 for graduate study in mathematics, physics, and astronomy. She became interested in stellar spectra while studying under Professor Sarah Whiting. In 1895, Cannon began her study of astronomy at Radcliffe College, joining the Harvard College Observatory staff in 1897. She spent the rest of her life in the Harvard College Observatory. In 1897 she was a research assistant under Professor E.C. Pickering. She became Curator of Astronomical Photographs in 1911, and in 1940, just two years before her retirement, she was finally awarded the rank of professor as the William Cranch Bond Astronomer. She published the nine-volume Henry Draper Catalog, containing information about 225,000 stars, and supplemented by the Henry Draper Extension. The catalog is still accepted as an international standard. She received many honors and awards, including a D. Sc. from Oxford University, making her the first woman to receive an honorary degree from that institution.

From the description of Papers of Annie Jump Cannon, 1863-1978. (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 77060499

Native of Dover, Del.; astronomer; graduate from Wellesley College; worked at the Radcliffe Observatory and began working at the Harvard Observatory in 1897; Cannon specialized in spectral photography and developed a system for classifying stars.

From the description of Annie Jump Cannon personal correspondence, 1940-1941. (Historical Society of Delaware). WorldCat record id: 76892158

Annie Jump Cannon (1863-1941) was the first astronomer to systematically classify the stars. She classified stars according to their stellar spectra using a procedure set up by Williamina Fleming. She is credited with classifying 400,000 stellar bodies and discovering more than 300 variable stars, 5 novae, and one spectroscopic binary.

After earning a B.S. at Wellesley College in 1884, she spent the next ten years both at home and travelling abroad. She returned to Wellesley in 1894 for graduate study in mathematics, physics, and astronomy. She became interested in stellar spectra while studying under Professor Sarah Whiting. In 1895, Cannon began her study of astronomy at Radcliffe College, joining the Harvard College Observatory staff in 1897.

She spent the rest of her life in the Harvard College Observatory. In 1897 she was a research assistant under Professor E. C. Pickering. She became Curator of Astronomical Photographs in 1911, and in 1940, just two years before her retirement, she was finally awarded the rank of professor as the William Cranch Bond Astronomer.

She published the nine-volume Henry Draper Catalog, containing information about 225,000 stars, and supplemented by the Henry Draper Extension. The catalog is still accepted as an international standard. She received many honors and awards, including a D.Sc. from Oxford University, making her the first woman to receive an honorary degree from that institution.

From the guide to the Papers of Annie Jump Cannon, 1863-1978, (Harvard University Archives)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Hoffleit, Dorrit. Papers, 1906-2005 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
creatorOf Cannon, Annie Jump, 1863-1941. Letters : Cambridge. Mass. & Newark, Del., to Howard Lehman Goodhart, 1934-1937. Bryn Mawr College, Mariam Coffin Canaday Library
referencedIn Harvard University Archives Photograph Collection: Portraits, ca. 1852-ca. 2004 Harvard University Archives.
referencedIn David Peck Todd papers, 1862-1939 Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
referencedIn American Astronomical Society. Records, 1897-1988, (bulk 1920-1980). American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Cannon, Annie Jump, 1863-1941. Papers of Annie Jump Cannon, 1863-1978. Harvard University, Archives
creatorOf Cannon, Annie Jump, 1863-1941. Annie Jump Cannon personal correspondence, 1940-1941. Historical Society of Delaware
referencedIn Papers of Annie Jump Cannon, 1863-1978 Harvard University Archives.
referencedIn Todd, David P. (David Peck), 1855-1939. David Peck Todd papers, 1862-1939 (inclusive). Yale University Library
referencedIn Papers, 1917-1982 Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
referencedIn Todd, David P. (David Peck), 1855-1939. David Peck Todd papers, 1862-1939 (inclusive). Yale University Library
referencedIn Campbell, William Wallace, 1862-1938. William Wallace Campbell postcards, 1903-1928. UC Berkeley Libraries
referencedIn Swope, Henrietta Hill, 1902-1982. Papers, 1917-1982 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
creatorOf Papers of Annie Jump Cannon, 1863-1978 Harvard University Archives.
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith American Astronomical Society. corporateBody
associatedWith Campbell, William Wallace, 1862-1938. person
associatedWith Cannon, Annie Jump, 1863-1941 person
associatedWith Cushman, Florence person
associatedWith Goodhart, Howard Lehman, 1884?-1951. person
associatedWith Harvard College Observatory corporateBody
associatedWith Harvard University corporateBody
associatedWith Harvard University Faculty. corporateBody
associatedWith Henrietta Hill Swope, 1902-1982 person
associatedWith Hoffleit, Dorrit. person
associatedWith Johann Mackie person
associatedWith Mayall, Margaret W. (Margaret Walton) person
associatedWith Swope, Henrietta Hill, 1902-1982. person
associatedWith Todd, David P. (David Peck), 1855-1939. person
associatedWith Wellesley College corporateBody
associatedWith Williamina Fleming person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Delaware
United States
Subject
Astronomy
Astronomical photography
Women astronomers--Correspondence
Occupation
Astronomers
Women astronomers--Archives
Function

Person

Birth 1863-12-11

Death 1941-04-13

Americans

English

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