In this age of smartphones and digital wrist watches, the Barnwell Sundial in front of the Court House in Barnwell, South Carolina continues to tell accurate time. As reported by the television stations WRDW and WAGT, "It was put up in 1858 after it was given to the county by state senator Joseph D. Allen. The sundial keeps very accurate standard time, even though that wasn't established until 1884. [Telling standard time is possible through Equation of Time corrections listed on the face of the dial.] The courthouse that is located near it burnt down in 1865, but the sundial stood tall. In 1918, still in it's original location, a concrete curbing was built around the sundial to protect it from traffic. Over the years, it was restored and fixed up."
See the video of Phill Huggins tell about how he got the opportunity to restore the sundial.
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In a sunny corner of Ken & Molly Cooper's garden, located at their home in the Del Webb community of Manteca, CA, is an 8x12 foot horizontal sundial. The hours lines are delineated by alternating light tan and red stone pebbles. The hours themselves are squares of marble with Roman numerals from 6am to 6pm. The 4 foot gnomon is about six inches wide, made of a concrete core and flanked with marble. The hour lines are correctly laid out for a thick gnomon.
Surrounding the dial is a low brick wall decorated with lizards and butterflies. According to Rose Alban Risso, correspondent for the Manteca Bulletin, "The central focus [of the garden], a huge sundial that took him hundreds of hours to make, is the realization of a childhood dream and fascination with astronomy. The two concrete spheres here were hand painted by the retired PG&E employee. One is designated as the night sky and the other represents daytime. An armillary time piece occupies another corner of the sundial..."
Read more about the Cooper's garden and sundial at: http://www.mantecabulletin.com/section/1/article/151684/
With the Masters Tournament playing in Augusta and the return of Tiger Woods, many golf enthusiasts think back to other great players. One of the greatest was Bobby Jones. John Steinbreder writes about a sundial in his honor, "Another reminder of Jones here [at the Augusta National Golf Club] is a small bronze statue just 18 1/2 inches in height that is part of a working sundial outside the Member Golf Shop and just across from the first tee. The effigy boasts a rich, brown patina and etched across the lower part of the sundial are the words: 'Slow Back, Time Right.'
Back in the 60's Pete Pascale found the statue and dial in a scrap metal dumping ground in Erie, Pensylvannia. After cleaning and repairing the statue, he gave it to Rick and Hank DeDionisio who ran Ricardo's Restaurant in Erie. The brothers were avid golfers and in turn presented the figure and dial to their Downing Golf Club. As Steinbreder writes,"...the brothers and club hit upon the idea of offering the statue to Augusta National, because of their admiration of Jones. They asked John May, a senior editor at Golf Digest, to act as an intermediary, and the journalist contacted Roberts in a letter dated May 18, 1972. Some time later, the Sundial took its place outside the Member Golf Shop."
Read about August National and the Sundial at: http://www.goerie.com/sports/20180406/erie-residents-helped-iconic-sundial-reach-augusta-national
It is believed that Edwin E. Codman, the English artist crafted the piece in the 1930s, using Jones as the model for the figure. Codman spent the early part of his life in England working at the Gorham foundry, creating small exquisite bronze sculptures. In 1931 he moved to Dorset, Vermont where he and his wife lived quietly until his death in 1955. Looking at history, Bobby Jones won fame between 1923 to 1930, culminating with the Grand Slam that included the British Amateur and British Open. It is very plausible that Codman made the sculpture and sundial in 1930 to recognize the fame of this retiring golfer.
The real story behind the Bobby Jones sundial is ultimately instructive for the world of golf: In Augusta, it doesn't tell correct time, even solar time. If Codman made the sundial in the UK, it explains the angle of the golf club shaft, closer to the latitude angle of London at 51 degrees rather than 42 (Erie, PA) and certainly not 36 degrees (Augusta, GA). This may be confirmed by the face of the dial, where the hours span from 4am to 8pm, allowing for the variation of sunlight in England, not Georgia.
So the joke is on all those golfers who look to the Bobby Jones sundial, as the only time telling device on the course: it has never told correct time (except for noon) in Augusta and never will. It would be fun to get a rubbing of the dial face to prove it runs on London time.
The heart of the Cosmic Room is an unusual vertical meridian sundial created by sunlight passing through a slot on the roof above. In winter the solar meridian transit is labeled with a column of blue tiles and at the spring equinox the tiles change to orange. The sign "Analemma 12:45" indicates civil time on the spring equinox when the sun is on the local meridian. With the sun overhead, the beam of light follows the vertical set of tiles downward until it reaches the boundary between orange and blue tiles - the equinox has arrived. Ruben Nohitol has been photographing this event for the last 16 years, every year since 2002. From a ceiling hole Ruben marks the image of the sun at 12:45 on the floor with a small green circle. He does this on dates throughout the year(s), not only creating a nice analemma, but does it with such precision that he is able to notice the slight shifts in solar equinox position through the leap year cycle of four years.
More impressive is the due west sunset on the equinox. A beam of light streams though a hole in the western wall of his hacienda, across the living room, through a square hole between rooms, across the Cosmic Room grazing past the vertical sundial and its tiles, and lands as a bright solar disk at the far end of the Cosmic Room on a vertical wood screen mounted on an exit doorway. To add to the drama of the setting equinox sun, Ruben placed a model of the pyramid of El Cerrito on a shelf in the Cosmic Room blocking some of the sun's rays. The result is a shadow of the the pyramid against the solar disk, giving the illusion of thesun setting over the great pyramid. You can see his vertical meridian and more at http://www.makeaholeinthewall.com and the sundial in operation at http://www.sundials.org/index.php/dial-links/videos/meridiane See his patience to photograph the real setting sun over the pyramid of El Cerrito in Queretaro, Mexico at http://www.sundials.org/index.php/dial-links/videos/analemmas-time-and-motion
NASS will hold this year's annual conference Thrs 16 Aug - Sun 19 Aug in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The conference will be held near the famed University of Pittsburgh campus with its Cathedral of Learning. The conference will be held at the Hilton Garden Inn, Pittsburgh University Place 3454 Forbes Avenue in Pittsburgh.
NASS has a discount rate for the conference at $119/night (plus tax). This rate will also apply 4 days before and 4 days after the conference, if rooms are available. You can call the Hotel at 412-683-2040 for reservations or visit the Hilton webpage specifically set up for NASS reservations at: https://bit.ly/2ERRW0I The hotel is about 20 miles from Pittsburgh International Airport with SuperShuttle transportation to the hotel at https://www.supershuttle.com/locations/pittsburghpit/ Use the GUENB to receive a discount round-trip ticket.
NASS has two registration types: Full and Partial. The Partial Option is only for Thursday Evening Reception, Saturday Conference Dinner, and the Friday Tour of Pittsburgh Sundials. The Partial Option does not include admission to the general sessions. Use the attached form (see below).
|Conference Registration||Until June 15||June 16 - July 15|
|w/Filet Mignon Dinner||$302||$192||$327||$217|
|w/Chicken Marsala Dinner||$290||$180||$315||$205|
|w/Fire Roasted Tortellini Dinner||$285||$175||$310||$200|
Territorial Sundial at Washington State Capitol Campus before Resotration
John W. Elliot, a Seattle master craftsman designed and executed the Territorial Sundial, a 6-foot dial hand-hammered in brass with a bronze rod gnomon in 1959. (NASS SUndial Registtry #319). But the dial had tarnished with age and weather and the gnomon bent and broken.
As of January 4, 2018, the Territorial Sundial returns to the Washington State Capitol Campus. For the last six months the 59 year old dial went through considerable rennovation. A new gnomon has been crafted as a replica of the original, but with improved attachments. According to "From Our Corner", the Washinfgton Secretary of State Blog, "Repairs have also been made to the face of the sundial, as well as work on the sundial’s base and anchoring system to ensure its face is flat and horizontal...The sundial will now be sturdier than ever with improved durability while maintaining its original historic appearance. [The] Department of Enterprise Services consulted with the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation and the State Arts Commission in deciding to replicate the artwork."
Within the 6-foot dial face "There are eight panels that depict important milestones in our territorial history. The quote by Marcus Aurelius on its display reads, “Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong is its current.” This beautiful dial, now restored as an accurate device more measuring solar time, will be dedicated at noon on Tuesday, January 30th, 2018.
Territorial Sundial Installation - January 2018