NHAS LogoNew Hampshire Astronomical Society
Illustration from The Star-Splitter, Century Magazine, 1923, J.J. Lankes
The best thing that we're put here for's to see;
The strongest thing that's given us to see with's
a telescope. Someone in every town
seems to me owes it to the town to keep one.
In Littleton it may as well be me.

- Robert Frost
from the collection New Hampshire, 1923
There is now an organization that coordinates and assists Library Telescope Programs nationwide (and even internationally). Check out LibraryTelescope.org for more details.
The NHAS's Library Telescope Program is the recipient of the Out-of-this-world Award from Astronomy Magazine for outstanding public programming.

Click for more details.
There are now 150 participating libraries in New Hampshire and Maine in the NHAS Library Telescope Program!
NHAS Library Telescope Program

These words from Robert Frost's poem, "The Star-Splitter" so eloquently summarize the idea behind NHAS's Library Scope Program.

The New Hampshire Astronomical Society, and particularly its Educational Outreach Committee, started placing telescopes and educational materials in selected libraries in New Hampshire beginning in December 2008. Our goal: To help foster scientific literacy, stimulate an interest in astronomy, and provide people who have never looked through a telescope the chance to experience the excitement that comes from discovery.

From a humble beginning of two scopes placed in 2008 followed by ten in 2009 and a further four in the first half of 2010, the program has grown beyond our own expectations.

Theresa Caswell & Lauri Gaudet of the Gale Library, Newton, NH

Placing the telescopes in local public libraries instead of just schools, allows greater general access to the scope since they can be put into circulation just as a book.

Where applicable, a local Club member acts as a foster parent to the scope. He or she will periodically clean and adjust the telescope, and act as a local astronomical resource to the library patrons. Additionally, a library member or student from a local school could be engaged as an apprentice astronomer to provide needed care to the scope.

Langdon Public Library, Newington, NH

NHAS has selected the Orion StarBlast 4.5-inch Astronomical Telescope for the libraries, along with a zoom eye piece and supportive material. We have re-written the instruction manual and provide a laminated, spiral-bound 4 by 6 inch copy with each scope. The telescope is easy to use and is robust. There is nothing to assemble. It has a wooden base, not the usual spindly tripod legs. The telescope is of manageable size, but has a relatively large optical tube. This means that the Moon and deep sky objects will show far more detail than one could see with the common "beginners" telescopes. It also has a large field of view that allows the object to stay in the eyepiece longer. This is a quality instrument, reviewed by a number of astronomical publications and found quite worthy.

Funding for the scopes has come from a variety of sources: the NHAS general budget, some specific donations from members, the public through donations at Skywatches, and library patrons interested in giving something to their communities. While we have presented a few libraries with outright gifts, the majority of the libraries have opted to purchase their telescope with their own funds, accepting the club's guidance and support.

The Library Telescope Program continues to be very well received. Each participating library typically has a waiting list for their telescopes, and most have set up book displays with the telescope as a centerpiece.

Susan Gilbert & Dawn Thurlow of the Kensington Public Library, Kensington, NH

We at NHAS are very proud of the success of the program and are delighted to provide an opportunity to further share our love of the night sky in this unique way. Thank you for visiting and taking an interest in our work. Please feel free to copy this program and the materials about the project (attribution would be appreciated). Let us know about your thoughts regarding the LTP and if you start one of your own.


Participating Libraries
Gilman Library
Alton, NH
Amherst Town Library
Amherst, NH
James A. Tuttle Library
Antrim, NH
Kimball Library
Atkinson, NH
Griffin Free Library
Auburn, NH
Oscar Foss Memorial Library
Barnstead, NH
Barrington Public Library
Barrington, NH
Bartlett Public Library
Bartlett, NH
Bath Public Library
Bath, NH
Bedford Public Library
Bedford, NH
Belmont Public Library
Belmont, NH
Bethlehem Public Library
Bethlehem NH
Baker Free Library
Bow, NH
Brown Memorial Library
Bradford, NH
Sutton Free Library
Bradford, NH
Mary E Bartlett Library
Brentwood, NH
Minot Sleeper Library
Bristol, NH
Brookline Public Library
Brookline, NH
Symth Public Library
Candia, NH
Elkins Public Library
Canterbury, NH
Ossipee Public Library
Center Ossipee, NH
Samuel H. Wentworth Library
Center Sandwich, NH
Tuftonboro Free Library
Center Tuftonboro, NH
Chester Public Library
Chester, NH
Chocorua Public Library
Chocorua, NH
Fiske Free Library
Claremont, NH
Colebrook Public Library
Colebrook, NH
Concord Public Library
Concord, NH
Hopkinton Town Library
Contoocook, NH
Conway Public Library
Conway, NH
George H. Stowell Free Library
Cornish Flat, NH
Dalton Public Library
Dalton NH
Colby Memorial Library
Danville, NH
Philbrick-James Library
Deerfield, NH
Derry Public Library
Derry, NH
Dover Public Library
Dover, NH
Dublin Library
Dublin, NH
Dummer Public Library
Dummer, NH
Dunbarton Public Library
Dunbarton, NH
Durham Public Library
Durham, NH
UNH Library
Durham, NH
William A. Bachelder Library
East Andover, NH
East Kingston Public Library
East Kingston, NH
Effingham Public Library
Effingham, NH
Harvey-Mitchell Memorial Library
Epping, NH
Exeter Public Library
Exeter, NH
The Goodwin Library
Farmington, NH
Fitzwilliam Town Library
Fitzwilliam, NH
Bixbey Memorial Library
Francestown, NH
Abbie Greenleaf Library
Franconia, NH
Fremont Public Library
Fremont, NH
Gilford Public Library
Gilford, NH
Gilmanton Year Round Library
Gilmanton Ironworks, NH
Goffstown Public Library
Goffstown, NH
Gorham Public Library
Gorham, NH
Grafton Public Library
Grafton, NH
Dunbar Free Library
Grantham, NH
Stephenson Memorial Library
Greenfield, NH
Weeks Public Library
Greenland, NH
Northumberland Public Library
Groveton, NH
Hampstead Public Library
Hampstead, NH
Hampton Falls Free Library
Hampton Falls, NH
Lane Memorial Library
Hampton, NH
Howe Library
Hanover, NH
Harrisville Library
Harrisville, NH
Fuller Public Library
Hillsboro, NH
Holderness Free Library
Holderness, NH
Hollis Social Library
Hollis, NH
Hooksett Library
Hooksett, NH
Rodgers Memorial Library
Hudson, NH
Jackson Library
Jackson, NH
Jaffrey Library
Jaffrey, NH
Keene Public Library
Keene, NH
Louis T. Graves Public Library
Kennebunkport, ME
Kensington Public Library
Kensington, NH
Kingston Community Library
Kingston, NH
Laconia Public Library
Laconia, NH
Weeks Memorial Library
Lancaster, NH
Lebanon Library
Lebanon, NH
Lee Public Library
Lee, NH
Lincoln Public Library
Lincoln, NH
Aaron Cutler Memorial Library
Litchfield, NH
Littleton Public Library
Littleton, NH
Leach Public Library
Londonderry, NH
Maxfield Public Library
Loudon, NH
J. A. Tarbell Library
Lyndeborough, NH
Madbury Public Library
Madbury NH
Madison Library
Madison, NH
Manchester City Library
Manchester, NH
Frost Free Library
Marlborough, NH
Meredith Public Library
Meredith, NH
Meriden Public Library
Meriden, NH
Merrimack Public Library
Merrimack, NH
Wadleigh Memorial Library
Milford, NH
Milton Free Public Library
Milton Mills, NH
Monroe Public Library
Monroe, NH
Daland Memorial Library
Mont Vernon, NH
Moultonborough Public Library
Moultonborough, NH
Nashua Public Library
Nashua, NH
Olivia Rodham Memorial Library
Nelson, NH
Whipple Free Library
New Boston, NH
New Durham Public Library
New Durham, NH
Gordon-Nash Library
New Hampton, NH
Tracy Memorial Library
New London, NH
Newbury Public Library
Newbury, NH
Paul Memorial Library
Newfields, NH
Langdon Public Library
Newington, NH
Newmarket Public Library
Newmarket, NH
Richards Free Library
Newport, NH
Gale Library
Newton NH
North Hampton Public Library
North Hampton, NH
Hall Memorial Library
Northfield, NH
Blaisdell Memorial Library
Nottingham, NH
Orford Free Library
Orford, NH
Pelham Public Library
Pelham, NH
Pembroke Town Library
Pembroke, NH
Josiah Carpenter Library
Pittsfield, NH
Philip Read Memorial Library
Plainfield, NH
Plaistow Public Library
Plaistow, NH
Pease Public Library
Plymouth, NH
Portsmouth Middle School
Portsmouth, NH
Portsmouth Public Library
Portsmouth, NH
Randolph Public Library
Randolph, NH
Dudley-Tucker Library
Raymond, NH
Ingalls Memorial Library
Rindge, NH
Rye Public Library
Rye, NH
Salisbury Free Library
Salisbury, NH
Gafney Library
Sanbornville, NH
Sandown Public Library
Sandown, NH
Seabrook Library
Seabrook, NH
Somersworth Public Library
Somersworth, NH
Libbie Cass Library
Springfield, NH
Vaughn Cottage Museum & Library
Star Island, Isles of Shoals, NH
Hill Library
Strafford NH
Wiggin Memorial Library
Stratham, NH
Richardson Memorial Library
Sugar Hill, NH
Abbott Library
Sunapee, NH
Mt. Caesar Union Library
Swanzey, NH
Cook Memorial Library
Tamworth, NH
Mansfield Public Library
Temple, NH
Gay-Kimball Library
Troy, NH
Joseph Patch Public Library
Warren NH
Weare Public Library
Weare, NH
Webster Free Public Library
Webster, NH
Webster Memorial Library
Wentworth, NH
Kilton Library
West Lebanon, NH
Wilmot Public Library
Wilmot, NH
Wilton Public and Gregg Free Library
Wilton, NH
Nesmith Library
Windham, NH
Wolfeboro Public Library
Wolfeboro, NH
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