[Proceedings of the Executive Council on the 4th April, 1855, with respect to the re-establishment of an Observatory in this colony.]
Extract from Minute No. 55/12. Confirmed 17th April, 1855.
2. The Council express their entire concurrence in His Excellency's views, and they advise that the Legislative Council be invited to make the necessary provision for a building in or near Sydney to contain the valuable instruments already in the possession of the Governmentfor such repairs to these instruments as may be requisitefor a residence for the Astronomer in the immediate vicinity of the Observatory,and for such additional accommodation for computers, etc., as may probably be required.
3. It may also be desirable to provide for the purchase of a dozen sets of Meteorological instruments for the purpose of recording at different points throughout the extensive area of the colony, observations as to temperature, moisture, direction of wind and atmospheric phenomena.
Clerk of the Council.
Specifications for Observatory by Sir William Denison, written 7th April.]
The buildings for which the Colonial Architect will have to estimate in addition to the mere foundations for the Time Ball will he as follows: 1st.A building about 36 feet long by 15 feet wide divided into two rooms, one 24 feet long and the other 12 feet, with two gable ends having two openings in the roof of the main room, which openings will be prolonged through the walls to within 3 feet of the ground.
The object of these openings is to allow an observer to direct his telescope to any portion of the meridional circle which may he required. The opening must have proper shutters working with pulley and counter weights so as to move easily, but yet close enough to keep out the weather completely.
The floor must be of wood raised some distance from the ground and so framed round the pillars which carry the instruments as to leave them quite clear and independent The pillars which carry the instruments should be of single blocks of sound stonethe foundation for which should be carried up from the solid rock, the foundation being kept quite clear from the sides of the pit in which it is placed. If it be necessary to quarry for this foundation, that is if the rock comes near the surface, the pit should be taken down five or six feet.
2nd.A circular building about fifteen feet in diameter with a roof revolving upon balls or rollers, with a shutter opening like those of the last described roof, but without any openings in the walls. This building is for extra meridional observations. A single pillar will be required in this building, the walls may he raised to the same height as those of the other building, but the floor should not be more than 6 ft. or 6 ft. 6 in. below the wall plates. The building should he placed so as to have a clear view all round to within 15° of the horizon.
3rd.Dwelling house for the Astronomer, consisting of four rooms with detached kitchen and offices.
4th.Fence to enclose a good space of ground round the observatory.
5th.Buildings for meteorological observations at twelve different points Of the colony - these will average about £50 each, they are mere wooden buildings to shelter the instruments and will be placed in the vicinity of the house of the observer. In every part these observations can he carried on.
Provision must be made for salary of Astronomer at rate of £500; for a clerk or computer, say a second-class clerk; for stationary, fuel, &c. (a moderate allowance.)
W. D.7th April, 1855.