Bond (family)

Bond, the family name of two United States astronomers, father and son. They were pioneers in the use of photography in astronomy.

William Cranch Bond

(17891859), the father, supervised construction of the Harvard College Observatory and served as its first director, 184759. In 1850 he and J. A. Whipple, a Boston photographer, made the first daguerreotype of a star (Vega). Bond also invented a chronograph for accurately timing the passage of stars across the sky. Bond was born in Falmouth (now Portland), Maine, and became a watchmaker. He studied astronomy as a hobby and built one of the best private observatories in the United States in Dorchester (later part of Boston), Massachusetts.

George Phillips Bond

(18251865) was among the first astronomers to use photographs to map the sky and to determine the size, brightness, and distance of stars. While working with his father at the Harvard College Observatory, he discovered Saturn's eighth satellite, Hyperion (1848) and Saturn's third ring (1850). Bond was born in Dorchester, Massachusetts, and graduated from Harvard in 1845. He succeeded his father as director of the Harvard College Observatory.