1897 – Yerkes Observatory Dedicated

On this date the was dedicated. Founded by astronomer George Hale and located in Williams Bay, the Yerkes Observatory houses the world’s largest refracting optical telescope, with a lens of diameter 102 cm/40 inches. It was built through the largess of the tycoon Charles Tyson Yerkes, who rebuilt important parts of the Chicago transportation system after the fire. Situated in a 77-acre park on the shore of , this observatory was the center for world astronomy in the early 20th century and invited a number of astronomers from around the world, including Japan, for scientific exchange. [Source: ]