Skip to main content

Cambridge University Libraries are providing a blend of online and controlled in-person services. Please see our website for more details.

Papers on receipts and gifts, 1875 - 1928

Reference Code: GBR/0180/RGO 7/68

Scope and Contents

Correspondence and other papers regarding the acquisition of moveable property by the Royal Observatory, including the following:

Correspondence with A. Cowper Ranyard, S. Denman, W. Spottiswoode and S. Crompton, who sent various photographs to Sir George Airy, 1875-1876.

Correspondence with J.P. Maclear and the Admiralty concerning the return of a spectroscope which the Royal Observatory had loaned to Maclear, 1876.

Copy of a letter from Airy to Lord Lindsay thanking him for the copy of Struve's 'Double Star Catalogue', with a summary, 1877.

Copy of a letter from Airy to W. Bosanquet, 1877, thanking him for the copy of his book which was sent to the Royal Observatory.

Letter from Airy to the librarian of the Royal Irish Academy requesting copies of volumes of 'Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy' which were missing from the Royal Observatory collection, 1877.

Correspondence with Isabella Herschel concerning the postage of a parcel of books sent to Airy, 1877.

Correspondence with L. Trouvelet asking for another copy of a drawing of Saturn, 1877. The original copy that was sent to Airy was lost, and Trouvelot offers a replacement.

Correspondence with W. Grimaldi concerning his gift of a book to the Royal Observatory: 'Proceedings of the Board of Longitude', 1878.

Correspondence with Herr Strasser concerning his gift of a photographic portrait of Johannes Kepler, 1878.

Correspondence with the librarians of various institutes and organisations concerning volumes missing from some periodical publications in the Royal Observatory Library, 1878-1879.

Correspondence with W.J. Read regarding his book on 'Navigation and Nautical Astronomy', 1879, a copy of which was sent to Airy.

Correspondence with the Undersecretary of the India Office concerning the gift of vols II, III and IV of the 'Account of the Great Trigonometrical Survey of India', 1879.

Correspondence with the Observatorio Astronomico Central, Mexico, concerning the gift of a celestial map in four parts made at the Observatorio, 1880.

Correspondence with the Admiralty and India Office concerning the forwarding of 'Hourly Meteorological Results', 1882.

Letter of receipt for the 'Report of the Mauritius Observatory 1884', 1886.

Letter of receipt for a volume of astronomical and meteorological observations of the United States Naval College, 1886.

List by Airy of the books on the shelves in the Astronomer Royal's office, 1886.

Letter of receipt for 'Reports of Meteorological Observations from 1876-1886' by the Imperial Observatory, Japan, 1887.

Letter of receipt for 'Abstracts of Meteorological Observations', Puerto Rico, 1888.

Letter of receipt for 'Abstracts, in duplicate, of Meteorological Observations at Puerto Rico', 1888.

Letter of receipt for a copy of a report made to the Solar Physics Committee by J. Norman Lockyer on the classification of various species of heavenly bodies, 1888.

Letter of receipt for a copy of Professor Young's 'General Astronomy', 1889.

Letter of receipt for a copy of the magnetic observations made by Captain Laschober on the Adriatic Coast, 1892.

Letter of receipt for vols I and II of the 'Edizione Nazionale delle Opere di Galileo Gililei' from the Italian Ministry of Public Instruction, 1893.

Letter of receipt for vol. III of the 'Edizione Nazionale delle Opere di Galileo Gililei' from the Italian Ministry of Public Instruction, 1893.

Notice from A. Freeman that he will be sending the Royal Observatory a copy of the third edition of 'Cheyne's Planetary Theory', 1893.

Letter of receipt from W.H. Wesley of the Royal Astronomical Society for three photographs, 1895: Gill's Eta Argus, a 10" x 8" transparency taken by Barnard, and a lantern slide of the Orion nebula by Dr Roberto'.

Letter of receipt for twenty copies of the new star correction tables from the University Observatory, Oxford, 1897.

Notice from the Adams Memorial Committee of the gift of vol. 1 of the 'Collected Papers of Professor Adams', 1897.

Correspondence with R. Gordon concerning the gift of nautical almanacs and other astronomical books to the Astronomer Royal, 1899, including:

1. Drew, 'Manual of Astronomer'.

2. Riddle, 'Treatise on Navigation and Nautical Astronomy', 1842.

3. Wollaston, 'Fasciculus Astronomicus', 1800.

4. 'Practical Observations on Telescopes'.

5. Brewster, 'Notes on Ferguson's Astronomy', 3 vols, 1811.

6. Inman, 'Navigation and Practical Astronomy', 1835.

7. 'Nautical Ephemeris Tables', 1802.

Letter of receipt for four photographs, 1899:

1. Urania Observatory at Berlin.

2. A 12" equatorial with micrometer by Bamberg.

3. The photographic mounting with pointer and 6" voigtlaender euryscope with which Eros was discovered.

4. Enlargement of a portion of the plate on which Eros was first sighted, given to the Observatory by M.G. Witt.

Letter of receipt for five copies of the 'Proceedings of the 12th General Conference of the International Geodetic Association' and of the 'special report appending to it', 1899.

Correspondence with Constance G. Lubbock concerning her gift of a copy of a portrait of Sir William Herschel, 1900.

Notice from H. Van Sittart-Neal of a series of tables founded on pendulum observations on board Austro-Hungarian men-of-war, to be forwarded to the Royal Observatory, 1902.

Request for a receipt for a set of maps sent to the Royal Observatory by the French Military Attaché, 1902.

Letter of receipt for a copy of Dr Holden's 'Memoir of Professors W C and G P Bond', 1902.

Letter of thanks to T. Thorpe for his gift of a transparent diffraction grating, 1905.

Letter of thanks to H.D. Taylor for the gift of a copy of his book 'A system of Applied Optics', 1906.

Correspondence with Francis Webb, 1907, concerning his gift of a model of the Moon by John Russel R.H. and a copy of 'Helvelli Selenographia', 1647, and six spare prints for covering the model.

Letter of thanks to Miss S. Paiget for a portrait of P.L. Guinard and biographical notes, 1907.

Letter of thanks to Miss A. Cuberne for a copy of her book 'Sun, Moon and Stars', 1907.

Letter of thanks to S.T. Humberston for a copy of 'Antiquity Revealed, The Philosophy of the Solar System', 1907.

Spectroscopic photograph of the transit of Mercury, sent to the Astronomer Royal by S. Rawilch, Barcelona, Spain, 1907.

Letter of thanks to W. Marriott (a former employee of the Observatory), 1910, for his gift of twenty-seven 5 x 5 negatives of the Royal Observatory taken between 1869 and 1877.

List of books received from the Royal Astronomical Society, June 1912.

Letter of receipt, 1916, for a copy of the 'Report of the Director of Cantonal Observatory of Neuchatel, Switzerland', 1914 and 1915.

Letter from the Hydrographic Department sending 'Tide Tables, Part I 1919'.

Letter from G.H. Lepper offering a copy of the fourth edition of his work 'From Nebula to Nebula, or The Dynamics of the Heavens', 1919.

Letter from the Dominion Observatory offering a list of 3162 stars adapted for latitude work, 1919.

Letter to the American Nautical Almanac Office, 1919, requesting that they send the Royal Observatory a copy of the 1920 'American Ephemeris'.

Letter of receipt, 1919, for two copies of 'Tide Tables', parts I and II for 1920.

Letter of receipt, 1920, for a copy of 'The Talcott Method of Determining Latitude'.

Request to the editor of 'Astronomische Nachrichten' for a 1921 copy of no. 13 of 'Beobachtungs - Zirkular der Astronomuschen Nachrichten', 1922.

Correspondence concerning the gift of a globe of the planet Mars by Miss Ingeborg Brun, 1925.

Envelope containing a copy of 'Nordisk Astronomisk Tidsskrift', 1921, including an article on Miss I. Brun's globe of Mars, which was presented by her to the Royal Observatory. The envelope also holds a booklet containing five photographs of the globe, which were also presented by Miss Brun.

Receipts for wall maps from London County Council Tramways, 1925.


  • 1875 - 1928

Conditions Governing Access

Unless restrictions apply, the collection is open for consultation by researchers using the Manuscripts Reading Room at Cambridge University Library. For further details on conditions governing access please contact Information about opening hours and obtaining a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket is available from the Library's website (


1 bundle(s) (1 bundle)

Language of Materials


The UK Archival Thesaurus has been integrated with our catalogue, thanks to Kings College London and the AIM25 project for their support with this.