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Explore Alliance Affiliate Organization - The Astronomical League

Explore Alliance Affiliate Organization - The Astronomical League

Martin Ratcliffe promotes the Astronomical League Live Program for Nov 17th, 2023


First proposed in 1939 when members of eleven amateur astronomical societies met at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, a series of meetings was held, culminating in Philadelphia on July 4, 1947, where the federation came into being with the adoption of bylaws was adopted, the election of officers, and the name "Astronomical League" was selected. Shortly thereafter, the organization was incorporated as a non-profit organization.

Astronomer Harlow Shapley

Astronomer Harlow Shapley served as Interim President of the Astronomical League in 1947, succeeded by Edward Halbach in that same year. 

The Astronomical Leagues objective is to promote the science of astronomy

  • by fostering astronomical education
  • by providing incentives for astronomical observation and research
  • by assisting communication among amateur astronomical societies.

      The Astronomical League is the world's largest federation of astronomy clubs composed of over three hundred local amateur astronomical societies. These organizations, along with our Members-at-Large (which allows international members), Patrons, and Supporting members form one of the largest amateur astronomical organizations in the world.

      The league's basic goal is to encourage an interest in astronomy (and especially amateur astronomy). Many people have seen pictures of the other planets in our Solar System from spacecraft, but have no idea that they too can see these objects with a telescope. The Astronomical League wants people to get access to telescopes, whether it is through their local astronomical society, school, or their own instruments, and use them to view the beauty in the heavens.

      The mission of the Astronomical League is clearly stated in the masthead: to promote the science of Astronomy. 



      Explore Scientific and the Explore Alliance sponsor three of the League's many prestigious awards:


      One of the major benefits of belonging to this organization is receiving the quarterly newsletter, The Reflector, which keeps you in touch with amateur activities all throughout the League. The chance to meet the people you read about, occurs during our annual National Convention or at one of the ten regional conventions that the AL sponsors. You may join the Astronomical League in one of the following ways:


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      Explore Alliance Affiliate Organization