John Mackenzie Bacon

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John Mackenzie Bacon, FRAS (19 June 1846 – 26 December 1904) was an English astronomer, aeronaut, and lecturer. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1888.[1] He and his daughter Gertrude Bacon made some of the earliest attempts to film a total solar eclipse. Their first expedition, to Vadso, Lapland (1896), was unsuccessful due to cloudy weather. They went home and planned another, this time to Buxar, India (Dec 1897-1898). They succeeded in filming the eclipse, but unfortunately the film has been lost. [2] A third attempt with John Nevil Maskelyne in Wadesborough, North Carolina (May 1900) was also successful.[3] Bacon and Maskelyne went on to file a patent for inflating balloons.[4]


  1. ^ "Obituary Notice: Fellows:- Bacon, John Mackenzie". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 65, p.334. 1805. Retrieved 2007-05-04.
  2. ^ Bottomore, Stephen. "John Mackenzie Bacon". Who's Who of Victorian Cinema. Retrieved 2007-05-04.
  3. ^ Haines, Catharine M. C. (2001). International women in science: a biographical dictionary to 1950. Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO. ISBN 1576070905.
  4. ^ French patent 332409 (1903) at European Patent Office site

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