Thursday, September 10, 2009

Philadelphia and Galileo's Telescope

My husband loves astronomy. He was very excited at the prospect of going to Philadelphia and seeing Galileo's telescope that is on loan at the Franklin Institute from it's home in Italy. I'd never been to Philadelphia and I love an opportunity to get out of dodge so we took a day off last week and drove the 3 hours to see some history.

In front of the Liberty Bell (the crack is on the other side)...I never realized how much this was a symbol of freedom, especially as it's linked to the prohibition of slavery and the movement towards civil rights.

Inside Independance Hall...this is the room where the Declaration of Independance was drafted and signed.

Betsy Ross home...she designed and made the first American flag. Did you know that because the Colonies were still technically under British rule the making of the flag would have been considered treason had she gotten caught? Crazy!

Jake's favorite part of the trip...petting the "kitty" outside of the Ross home. He was so afraid of it at first and then didn't want to leave. :)

And, of course, Philly Cheese Steaks were a requirement for dinner. Greasy Goodness.

I don't have any pictures of the exhibit because they wouldn't let us take any. It really wasn't much to look at compared to the telescopes of today, but when you consider that it was the first of it's kind that actually allowed a vision of the heavens beyond our atmosphere and revolutionized the scientific world back in the early 1600's, it's pretty darn cool. (Just in case you're wondering, the description of the telescope says, that "Galileo fashioned the instrument using two half-shells of carved wood bound together with copper wire, wrapped in paper, and varnished.")
And then I have to add my own two cents about "Galileo"...the word brings to mind a song by the Indigo Girls that I was introduced to by my one of my college roommates. It was in my head the whole way home and I had to play it the entire next day, singing at the top of my lungs. The only thing missing was the harmony from my friend, Emily. Good memories. Good times.


InkMom said...

Good times.

I just got that CD out the other day, and I can't help but sing along . . . also at the top of my lungs.

Indigo Girls are great shower-singin' music!

Kado! said...

Wow! That looks like a really fun trip! I love our History...I love when you are somewhere that has such a strong connection to our past. It makes the place you are visiting that much more moving!