American Eclipse

American Eclipse

With this "suspenseful narrative history" (Maureen Corrigan, NPR's Fresh Air), award-winning science writer David Baron tells the story of the enterprising scientists--among them, planet hunter James Craig Watson, pioneering astronomer Maria Mitchell, and ambitious young inventor Thomas Edison--who raced to Wyoming and Colorado in the summer of 1878, at the dawn of the Gilded Age, to observe the first great American eclipse. Thrillingly recreating the fierce jockeying of these nineteenth-century astronomers, Baron draws on years of "exhaustive research to reconstruct a remarkable chapter of U.S. history" (Lee Billings, Scientific American), when the fate of American science still hung precariously in the balance. Now updated with an afterword that unites eclipses and eclipse-chasers past and present--revisiting the total solar eclipse of 2017 and looking forward to that of 2024--American Eclipse reveals the enduring power of these ethereal events to bring people together across space and time.

Publication Date: 
February 13, 2024