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Martin Meredith

250th anniversary of Messier's first Messier object discovery

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I just wanted to mention to deep sky observers a thread I started in the Astro Lounge concerning the upcoming 250th anniversary of Messier's first 'Messier' object discovery, the globular M3, which took place on May 3rd 1764. It may be fun for deep sky observers (and imagers) to contribute observations/sketches/photos to coincide with the anniversary.



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That's a very nice idea. Messier went on to discover another 3 objects in May 1764. Here for anniversary lovers are all the Messier objects discovered in that month (in various years), with their discoverers (data from http://www.klima-luft.de/steinicke/index_e.htm)

M3 (Messier) 3 May 1764

M5 (Kirch) 5 May 1702

M9 (Messier) 28 May 1764

M10 (Messier) 29 May 1764

M12 (Messier) 30 May 1764

M61 (Oriani) 5 May 1779

M104 (Mechain) 11 May 1781

The richest is March, with 23 objects discovered in that month. 17 objects were discovered in 1764 (all of them by Messier, using a 3.5 inch refractor) so there are quite a few 250th anniversaries to celebrate - perhaps someone might want to image/observe all of them next month? They are 3,9,10,12,14,18,19,20,21,23,24,26,27,28,29,30, 40. The last is one of Messier's non-objects (a double star) which he found on 24 October.

Edited by acey
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