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Weston Observatory



Weston Observatory is a geophysical research and science education center of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Boston College.

Late in the year 1928, Georgetown University donated a pair of Bosch-Omori pendula to Weston College. Reverend E.P. Tivnan, SJ, Rector of Weston College, had been interested in erecting a seismic station at Weston and it was through his efforts that Georgetown University donated this equipment. Reverend Henry M. Brock, SJ, was appointed Director of the Station.The first Weston Observatory seismographs were installed at the Campion Center, next to the current Observatory, and began recording earthquakes in January 1931. The instruments were maintained by the Jesuits for many decades and were relocated to the newly built Weston College (now the Weston Observatory) in 1949. The WWSSN instruments were installed late in 1961.

Weston Observatory was integrated into Boston College in 1946. It has been a vital part of graduate education since 1947 and of the Earth and Environmental Sciences (previously known as Geology Department) since 1968. Daniel Linehan, SJ, first appointed as a seismologist in 1934, served as Director of the Observatory from 1950 to 1972. Under his leadership, in 1949 the Graduate Department of Geophysics was established on the Weston Observatory Campus. Linehan served as Chairman of the Department until 1962. Throughout his tenure, the Weston Observatory continued to enlarge the scope and quality of scientific data acquisitions and analysis.

In 1958, James W. Skehan, SJ, appointed Assistant Director of Weston Observatory, founded the Department of Geology on the Chestnut Hill campus. He served as its Chairman until the departments of Geology and Geophysics merged to become the Department of Geology and Geophysics in 1968. In 1972, he succeeded Linehan as director.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Weston Observatory Director's records: Daniel Linehan, SJ

Abstract These records document the history of the Boston College Weston Observatory from the 1950s to the 1970s through materials created by seismologist and director Daniel Linehan, SJ. Materials include correspondence, engineering plans, minutes, reports, seismological field notes, seismological equipment, and photographs related to seismological and electromagnetic work performed by the Observatory. Also included are materials from Linehan's involvement with amateur radio, his religious notes,...
Restrictions on access

Collection is open for research.

Film reels and audio tape reels are not available for playback due to format impermanence and cannot be reformatted by Burns Library at this time. Please let Burns Library Public Services know of your specific interest; when it becomes possible we will schedule reformatting.

Negatives, in box 60, are not an access medium and are not available for use; print photographs are available for access.

Dates: 1889 - 1986; Majority of material found within 1950 - 1972