Introduction: Look Up to Southern Stars

  • Bárbara K. Silva
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Science and Technology book series (PSHST)


The introduction opens with remarks on how astronomy connects us with our past; every human being, in every time or place, has done the same gesture: looking up, to those lights within the darkness. The introduction presents the development of astronomy in Chile before the Mills Expedition arrival. There was only one previous initiative in the mid nineteenth century, also led by Americans—in this case, by Lt. James Melville Gilliss. Afterwards, I present the background of James Lick, the donor of the Lick Observatory. Lick’s life takes us to South America in the 1830s, in his longing to become wealthy and get the love of his life.


Astronomy in Chile James Lick Nineteenth century 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bárbara K. Silva
    • 1
  1. 1.Pontificia Universidad Católica de ChileSantiagoChile

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