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    Re: Simple celestial navigation in 1897
    From: Bill B
    Date: 2006 Mar 3, 02:14 -0500

    > . That's how it was done for decades on ships at  sea even as late
    > the 1940s. With all the talk recently on Sumner's method, I  think it's worth
    > remembering that Sumner's lines were considered a somewhat  exotic technique,
    > one that might never be used in months at sea. Celestial lines  of position
    > didn't catch on universally until almost a century after Sumner  published.
    > And
    > why that was the case is still a fascinating  question...
    Currently working though the book Ken mentioned, Arthur Koestler's "The
    Sleepwalkers."  (Not, *in my opinion* a light read--he gets you to the edge
    of your seat crying, "But what about" then casually drops it in at the last
    possible moment.)
    It did, and does not, come to me as a surprise that the obvious can be
    totally ignored for much longer than a century. In the first stages of
    Koestler's book we go from bizarre models of the solar system/universe (by
    current thinking), to functional models of the solar system (Aristarchus of
    Samos & Herakleides) but continued to ignore the obvious and kept trying to
    pound an elliptical peg into a round, or square, hole for over a 1000 years.
    (A tip of the hat to my personal high-entertainment-value favorite for the
    past several decades, the remaining flat earthers).
    Back to Sumner, I eagerly await the results of George's inquiries into
    Small's/Smalls (and other?) "migrating" lighthouse(s).  It was clearly IMHO
    within the abilities of civil engineers to erect such a structure on a
    submerged shoal or foundation circa Smalls # 2.  Is relocation the case, or
    were there measurement problems?

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