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Astronomical and Meteorological Workers in New South Wales


Lieutenant Dawes

Captain Flinders

Admiral Phillip Parker King

Sir Thomas MacDougall Brisbane

Dr. Charles Stargard Rumker

James Dunlop

P. E. De Strzelecki

Captain J. C. Wickham

Rev. W. B. Clarke, M.A.

Rev. A. Glennie

E. C. Close

Sir William Macarthur

J. Boucher

S. H. Officer

John Wyndham

William Stanley Jevons

Establishment of Meteorological Observatories

Votes and Proceedings, N.S.W., 1848.

Appendix A.

Appendix B.

Appendix C.

Appendix D.

Appendix E.

Appendix F.

Appendix G.

Appendix H.

Appendix I.

Appendix J.

Appendix K.

Appendix L.

Appendix M.

Appendix N.

Appendix O.

Appendix P.

Appendix Q.

Appendix R.

Appendix S.

Appendix T.

Appendix U.



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Dr. Charles Stargard Rumker (continued)

The Royal Astronomical Society's Notices also contain notes of papers by him, written while he was in Australia, as follows:—
Vol. 1,page 75,On the length of Pendulums.
Vol. 1,page 78,Results of observations at Parramatta.
Vol. 1,page 98,December solstice.
Vol. 1,page 125,Solstice and equinox in 1827, and others.
Vol. 1,page 183,Observations on a passage from N.S.W. also to England.

It appears on the title page of his observations in the Philosophical Transactions for 1829, that the printing was paid for by His Majesty's Colonial Department. This work consists of a vast number of observations to determine the latitude; a few to determine the longitude; a number of comet observations, and others to determine latitude by the sun's solstice; observations of the moon and planets, etc.

Every care has evidently been bestowed upon these observations, and their subsequent reduction, and it was no fault of Mr. Rumker's that the observations are affected by incurable errors depending upon the imperfect instruments with which he was obliged to work. Of these Mr. Rumker was fully conscious, and by every means in his power tried to eliminate them, but they were of such a nature that all his efforts necessarily failed to produce the desired results.

I find by reference to official letters that Mr. Rumker's promise of appointment is dated 21st December, 1827 (see Appendix C); but his observations began in Pararmatta in May 1826, he must, therefore, have been appointed by the Governor, subject to confirmation by the Home Government. (See Appendix D, letter of July 16, 1829, his actual appointments.)

Rumker, (Philosophical Transactions, 1829, part III., pp. 29 and 151), says:—

The longitude of Parramatta as a mean of all is—
[9]Port Jackson—by Brisbane observing at Government House, August 16, 182210h.5m.17.89s.
Difference between Parramatta and Sydney, by chronometers, Capt. P. P. King0h.0m.51.93s.
Mean of several observed differences;50.88s.
this added to Paramatta longitude makes longitude, Sydney10h.4m.57.13s.
[10]Government House, Sydney, by Admiral Bligh10h.5m.10.5s.
Government House, Sydney, by Capt. King10h.5m.8.2s.

Rumker, (Royal Astronomical Society Proceedings, Vol VI., p. 213), gives a final correction for the longitude of Parramatta as the result of a second calculation from his moon observations there, and makes it 10h. 4m. 7s.217. Date, April, 1845.

Some unimportant letters were sent by him from Parramatta and published in Baron de Zach's Correspondence, and he read one paper before the Philosophical Society of Australia on March 13, 1822, on "The Astronomy of the Southern Hemisphere," which is published in Baron Field's "Geographical Memoirs of New South Wales" but it is of no value to science, as it simply points out the advantage of the geographical position of Parramatta for observations, a fact which did not need a paper before the Society to make it obvious.

People in Bright Sparcs - Rümker, Christian Carl Ludwig; Russell, Henry Chamberlain

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Russell, H. C. 1888 'Astronomical and Meteorological Workers in New South Wales, 1778-1860,' Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science vol. 1, 1888, pp. 45-94.

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