Henrietta Hill Swope, 1902-1982

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HHS, astronomer, was the eldest child of Gerard and Mary Dayton (Hill) Swope; her mother was the daughter of Thomas Hill, president of Harvard University, 1862-1868. She received her A.B. from Barnard College in 1926 and her A.M. from Radcliffe College in 1928. In 1936, while assistant at the Harvard Observatory (1928-1942), she was a member of the expedition sent jointly by the Harvard Observatory and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to study the solar eclipse in Soviet Central Asia. During World War II she was staff member of the M.I.T. Radiation Laboratory and then served as a mathematician in the Hydrographic Office of the U.S. Department of the Navy. From 1947 to 1952 she taught astronomy at Barnard College and in 1952 was appointed assistant, later research fellow, at the Mt. Wilson and Palomar Observatories in California. After her retirement in 1968, she continued to work at the Observatories.

HHS was a member of the American Astronomical Society; she received the AAS Annie Jump Cannon Prize in 1968 for her research on photometry and variable stars. She was responsible for developing a new yardstick for measuring the universe: calibrating distance by determining the brightness of stars. She received the Distinguished Alumna Award of Barnard College in 1975 and the Barnard Medal of Distinction in 1980.

From the guide to the Papers, 1917-1982, (Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Papers, 1917-1982 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
correspondedWith Adams, Adeline person
correspondedWith Baade, Hanni person
associatedWith Baade, Walter, 1893-1960 person
associatedWith Barnard College corporateBody
associatedWith Barnard: Student Loan Fund corporateBody
associatedWith Ben-Gurion, David, 1886-1973 person
associatedWith Bok, Bart, 1906- person
correspondedWith Bok, Priscilla person
correspondedWith Boyd, Constance person
associatedWith Burbridge, Eleanor Margaret person
correspondedWith Burbridge, Margaret person
associatedWith Cannon, Annie Jump, 1863-1941 person
associatedWith Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin person
correspondedWith David Swope Jr. person
correspondedWith Dorothea Swope person
associatedWith Dorothy (McGuire) Swope person
correspondedWith Elizabeth (Hill) Worcester person
associatedWith Hamilton, Alice, 1869-1970 person
associatedWith Hamilton Edith, 1867-1963 person
associatedWith Hamilton, Margaret person
correspondedWith Harlow Shapley person
associatedWith Harvard Astronomical Observatory corporateBody
associatedWith Harwood, Margaret, 1885-1979 person
correspondedWith Hill family, family
correspondedWith Julie Swope person
correspondedWith Lucy Swope person
correspondedWith Margaret Thomson person
correspondedWith Mary Norton Allen person
associatedWith McGuire, Dorothy, 1919- person
correspondedWith Mt. Wilson Observatory corporateBody
correspondedWith Palomar Observatories corporateBody
associatedWith Payne-Gaposchkin, Cecilia, 1900-1979 person
associatedWith Plaut, Lucas person
correspondedWith Sarah C. Hill person
associatedWith Shapley, Harlow, 1885-1972 person
associatedWith Swope, David person
associatedWith Swope family family
associatedWith Swope, Gerard, 1872-1958 person
associatedWith Swope, Gerard, 1905- person
associatedWith Swope, John person
associatedWith Swope, Mary (Hill) person
associatedWith Technicon (Institute of Technology) corporateBody
associatedWith Technicon, Israel, (Institute of Technology) corporateBody
correspondedWith Yoshiko family family
Place Name Admin Code Country


Birth 1902

Death 1982

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