Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

Los Angeles  

Sundial: 77
State/Province:  California Country:  USA
Dial Type:  Equatorial Dial Condition:  Excellent
  Latitude and Longitude: 34° 7.131' N  118° 18.023' W
Location:
  • Griffith Observatory
    Southern slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park at 1134 foot elevation.
    Adjacent to Astronomers Monument, north of main entrance.
 
Description:
  • A bronze equatorial ring dial with taut wire gnomon on concrete pedestal. Ring is inscribed with hour, ten-minute and minute lines. Plaque states the dial indicates correct watch time so observatory staff periodically rotates clamped ring to correct for EOT, longitude and DST. Dial is located adjacent to the Astronomers Monument atop which is a large bronze armillary. The monument recognizes Hipparchus, Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, Newton and Hershel. The sundial was originally built into the base of the Astronomers Monument but was relocated a few feet to the south during the 2002-2006 remodeling to allow visitors to more closely approach the dial. The dial sits atop a concrete pedestal.

    From the Griffith Observatory:"Our equatorial sundial was created and installed by Observatory staff (Leon Hall and Joseph Frame) in 1957. The ring is made of high-nickel bronze and has an outside diameter of 34 inches. Engraved markings on the ring allow one to track the movement of the shadow and, thus, to keep the time using the Sun. The ring is held in position by a clamp, which can be loosened to allow staff to rotate the ring when adjustments are needed (such as when Daylight Saving Time begins and ends). The heavy wire passing through the center of the ring, and at right angles to it, is made of a nickel-copper alloy. It is parallel to the Earth's axis, being accurately mounted in a north-south direction and pointed to the north pole of the sky. The angle it makes with the horizon is 34 degrees, which is equal to the latitude of Los Angeles. The Sundial gives us a better appreciation of the role of our rotating Earth as the fundamental timekeeper."
 
General Information:Inscription:
  • Owner: City of Los Angeles
  • "IN SUNLIGHT THE SHADOW OF THE WIRE INDICATES CORRECT WATCH TIME ON THE RING."
  • Designer: Leon Hall and Joseph Frame
  • Builder: Leon Hall and Joseph Frame
  • Construction Date: 1957
 
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Last Revised: 2020-01-19 22:36

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