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Welcome to MWO

The Museum

150-ft Solar Tower

60-ft Solar Tower

Snow Telescope

60-inch Telescope

100-in Telescope

Berkeley Interferometer

CHARA Array

The Galley

Michelson Site

The Monastery

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The Monastery

The Monastery courtyard as it appeared in 1908. The dog, a German Shephard, was named Solar.

The Monastery is a dormitory for Observatory staff and visiting scientists. It is situated at the end of a peninsula with sharp drop-offs on three sides. Built in the shape of an inverted "J", its long wing has 14 rooms separated into "day" and "night" sections for visitors working on either solar or nighttime projects. The rest of the building includes cook's quarters, dining room and a combination library/living area. The original Monastery was destroyed by fire in 1908, a new, fire-resistent version was completed in 1909. Both structures were designed by famed California architect Myron Hunt.

For decades, astronomers and mountain staff would gather in the Monastery dining room to be served lunch by the mountain cook. The 100-observer would sit at the head of the table and summon subsequent courses from the kitchen by ringing a bell.

On the south-facing slope below the Monastery, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory operates a facility for studying the studying the atmospheric chemistry of the air over the Los Angeles basin.

Albert Einstein and Observatory notables in the Monastery library in 1931. Edwin Hubble is standing behind Einstein.