After dinner, Annie went out on the back porch. It was a Saturday evening and darkness had started to set over the Delaware sky. Her mom noticed that Annie was looking up at the stars so she went out to take a look. Annie’s Mom had always loved to star-gaze and had recently noticed that her daughter had this same passion so she had taught Annie the constellations. Annie’s Dad was finishing up dinner. Later he would meet with his business manager about a major project in his shipbuilding business.
Several years went by and Annie was home for Christmas. She was taking a few weeks away from traveling and dabbling in photography to think about her future. She decides to go out on that same back porch she used to go as a child to look up at the Delaware sky. She had graduated from Wellesley College recently where she studied physics and was contemplating reentering college to specialize in astronomy at Radcliffe College.
A few more years went by before Annie got word that she had been appointed to the staff at Harvard College Observatory to record, classify and catalog stars based on temperatures. Five years later, this would lead to the publishing of a catalog of 1,122 southern stars. In 1910, her system was adapted by observatories worldwide. Annie Jump Cannon’s system of star classification groups stars into categories labeled O, B, A, F, G, K and M (known by the mnemonic, “Oh, Be a Fine Girl, Kiss Me”)
She later compiled the Henry Draper Catalogue which was published by the Harvard Observatory between 1918 and 1924. The catalogue lists the spectral types, magnitudes, and positions of 225,300 stars and continues to be used internationally by astronomers.
This story is just one of many great stories found when we look into the lives of people that have made a difference. You see, Annie set in motion the tremendous discoveries that are being made today. Just recently, astronomers have found a new planet in a different solar system that may be Earth’s twin; capable of supporting life. They study the brightness of stars and notice a planet because its orbit crosses in front of the star and causes it to dim. Here’s a link: New Planets Discovered.
What will be your story? Right now, you may know of something that no one else could possibly know about. My hope is that this video will inspire you to give some thought to what great discovery you might make in the future: Giants Awakening - Vision for Success
You may be like Annie’s mom and give a child a dream or you may be like Annie, looking to make new discoveries. Reflect on these thoughts each day and be thankful for the opportunity to reach for the stars in whatever you do.
Check out my other blogs where I receive a constant supply of inspiration for my writings by clicking on the links below: