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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Norristown in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

David Rittenhouse

 
 
David Rittenhouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., July 3, 2009
1. David Rittenhouse Marker
Inscription.
Eminent astronomer
and mathematician.
Born April 8, 1732
Died June 26, 1796.

He calculated and
observed the transit
of Venus at his home
in Norriton 1769

 
Erected 1884 by Montgomery County Centennial (1784-1884) Association.
 
Location. 40° 6.906′ N, 75° 20.647′ W. Marker is in Norristown, Pennsylvania, in Montgomery County. Marker is on Swede Street, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is about 75 feet southwest of the county courthouse. Marker is in this post office area: Norristown PA 19401, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within one mile of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Military Order of the Purple Heart (a few steps from this marker); Montgomery County Civil War Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); September 11 2001 (within shouting distance of this marker); Montgomery County Vietnam War Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Montgomery County Court House (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Selma (approx. one mile away); Gen. Andrew Porter (approx. one mile away); Hancock the Superb (approx. 1.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Norristown.
 
Also see . . .
David Rittenhouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., July 3, 2009
2. David Rittenhouse Marker
Purple Heart memorial to right, behind lightpole.

1. David Rittenhouse. (Submitted on October 23, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. David Rittenhouse at FindAGrave.com. (Submitted on July 20, 2011, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.)
 
Categories. Colonial EraExplorationNotable EventsNotable PersonsScience & MedicineSettlements & Settlers
 
David Rittenhouse image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 16, 2015
3. David Rittenhouse
This 1796 portrait of David Rittenhouse by Charles Willson Peale hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC.

“A child prodigy who received no formal education, David Rittenhouse became one of early America's most respected scientists and is depicted here as president of the American Philosophical Society. Rittenhouse made his living as a clock-and instrument-maker; his mathematical skills earned him service on commissions determining the boundaries of several states. He constructed two orreries, instruments that accurately depict the motions of the solar system for 5,000 years, backwards and forwards. Rittenhouse achieved international fame when, acting on John Ewing's proposal, he organized the Philosophical Society's participation in an international effort to measure the transit of Venus. This allowed astronomers to more accurately measure distances to celestial objects. Rittenhouse's published observations, along with those of other American scientists, attracted favorable reactions in Europe, bringing a new recognition of American scientific achievement.

Charles Willson Peale, who knew the sitter well, included in this portrait a reflecting telescope that may have been the one Rittenhouse had inherited from Benjamin Franklin.” — National Portrait Gallery
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 23, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 664 times since then and 28 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 23, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.   3. submitted on May 25, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.
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