1950s-new-year

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8 Comments on “”

  1. katry Says:

    Hal Borland quote

  2. minicapt Says:

    1. It’s not the New Year, and already someone dropped the ball.
    2. If the ball does not bounce, it cannot be followed.

    Cheers

  3. Bob Says:

    The ball in Times Square is a time ball. These were used at the Royal Observatory to tell the ships anchored in the Themes river below when it was one o’clock in the afternoon. Each ship had a very accururate chronometer that had to be set to the exact time at the prime meridian which goes through Greenwich where the observatory is located. The astronomers would check the sun’s position for high noon and then lower the ball an hour later. The ship’s navigators would set their chronometers exactly when the ball reached the bottom of the pole. The difference between the local time and the time at the prime meridian is how navigators could calculate their latitude before GPS was invented. Incidentally cabin boys on British ships had the important job of wearing the key to wind the chronometer around their necks.


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