17 March 2006

Photo du Jour: John Brown's Sidewalk Astronomy in the Vieux Carre

Following the St. Bernard Parish design presentation by Andres Duany and his firm DPZ (post coming on that), myself and my friend decided to stop over in the Vieux Carre for a bite to eat and some beer to drink. We wound up eating dinner and "having a few" at Coop's Place then on the Molly's on the Market for a few more frosty beverages. As we were driving off to call it a night, my friend had a beignet craving so I made the block and was able to park within a block of Cafe du Monde. As he has been for thirty years, John Brown and his Sidewalk Astronomy was setup right on Decatur Street on the sidewalk adjacent to Cafe du Monde. After we had a sugar and fried dough fix, we walked over and talked to Mr. Brown for a while and also looked into the eyepiece of the telescope. At first the telescope was aimed at the Moon (as seen in the picture). Looking into the telescope it was amazing to see pretty good detail of the rough cratered surface of the Full "Ides of March" Moon. Then I asked about the "rings of Saturn" as his chalk board sign mentions and he turned the telescope in the opposite direction (aimed directly above St. Louis Cathedral) and within thirty seconds he had Saturn in view and focused. I stepped up to the ladder and although fairly small, clear as day the sphere and rings of Saturn fell into view. The moon Io could also be seen through the lens, but it just resembled a star as would be seen in the normal sky.

We have lost so much since August 2005--hopefully most of it will come back as New Orleans rebuilds--but seeing that such a fixture of the French Quarter and New Orleans remains right where its supposed to be reassures me we can overcome the problems left in the wake of the MANMADE FLOODING spurred from KTMB.


At December 22, 2019 3:03 PM, Blogger Unknown said...


I am a sidewalk astronomer from Philadelphia visiting New Orleans this week. Is John Brown still around! I've love the opportunity to reach out.

You can reach me at Bill@PhillyMoonMen.org, thank you for any information you might have!


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