The 1819 Rotunda Planetarium

Thomas Jefferson’s ca. 1819 Rotunda Planetarium designs called for a mystifying (and dangerous) boom-and-pulley system by which an operator would be lifted to adjust gilt stars fixed to the Rotunda’s concave ceiling. This document, the only description of the Rotunda Planetarium that survives, is bound in a small pamphlet containing Jefferson’s notes and sketches for […]