Maria Mitchell observed her first solar eclipse with her father at age 12. As the first professional female astronomer in the United States, she led teams to study eclipses in Iowa in 1869 and in Colorado in 1878.


Maria Mitchell Association (Nantucket, Massachuetts)

Founded in 1902, the Maria Mitchell Association honors the legacy of Maria Mitchell through historic preservation and science educaion. The Association operates the Mitchell House museum, two observatories, a natural science museum, and an aquarium. They provide science programs for all ages.

Vassar College (Poughkeepsie, New York)

The original Mitchell Observatory still stands on the campus of Vassar College and houses two of her original instruments. The Special Collections in the college archives contain materials from her life that are available for view by arrangement.

National Museum of American History (Washington, D.C.)  

This Smithsonian museum features the original telescope that Maria Mitchell and her students used at Vassar College. When it was installed, it was the third-largest refracting telescope in the country.

Photo Credits

Athenaum: Boston Public Library (Flickr, CC BY 2.0) Mitchell Crater: EricandHolli at the English language Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0) Star background: ESA/Hubble & NASA Maria Mitchell Association Nantucket Historical Association New York Public Library Vassar College Herschels: Wellcome Library, London (CC BY 4.0) Wikimedia Commons