Maury speaking of the greatness of the Universe.
Henrietta Swan Leavitt describing her famous discovery.
Annie Jump Cannon: Celestial Computer
Williamina Paton Stevens Fleming:
From Housekeeper to Astronomer
- Cecilia Payne
At the beginning of the 20th century, a group of women known as the Harvard Observatory "computers" helped revolutionize the science of astronomy. Hired by Edward Pickering, these scientists also were given the nickname of "Pickering's Harem".
INSIGNIFICANT the web series is made up of 9 fifteen minutes episodes but can be made into a longer series if preferred. History has given us plenty of material.
ONE: It is 1925, and Cecilia Payne is about to graduate as the first female to receive a Ph.D. in Astronomy from Harvard University. However, in order to give herself a fighting chance to have a successful career, she is going to negate the findings of her doctorate studies which have the potential to change everything anyone knows about the known universe. Her mentor, Annie Jump Cannon, is understandably displeased, and begins a journey carved out of her own memories of what it was like to be one of the original Harvard "computers."
TWO: Cecilia gets a taste of what it was like for the Harvard "computers" when they first started out. At Annie's prodding, Cecilia explains her meeting with Professor Henry Russell to ensure Annie that she has made the right decision in regards to her thesis.
THREE: Cecilia is introduced to the major players in the Harvard "computer" saga via inappropriate means.
FOUR: Cecilia witnesses how the Harvard "computers" began with Williamina Fleming being somehow more reliable as a maid than teaching assistants who can't be bothered with such tedious work.
FIVE: Cecilia watches the "computers" on a night off, unable to completely pull themselves away from discussing work. The four women hatch a plan to symbolically gain more recognition for themselves.
SIX, SEVEN, EIGHT AND NINE....Curious? We can't give it all away.