- Hardcover: 32 pages
- Publisher: Pelican Publishing (Oct. 10 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1455616370
- ISBN-13: 978-1455616374
- Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 1.3 x 28.6 cm
- Shipping Weight: 227 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #605,414 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Discovery of Longitude Hardcover – Oct 10 2012
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From the Inside Flap
Discover the fascinating story behind one of the most important changes to nautical navigation. Long ago, sailors risked their lives, cargo, and ships when traveling the seas. They followed the shoreline, navigating by recognizable landmarks and the stars, but often became lost or wrecked upon the rocky coast. Those who traveled the waters wanted more; they wanted to be able to consistently, and safely, navigate across oceans. To do so, they needed to know three things: latitude, longitude, and direction. A good ship's captain could use a sextant, compass, and certain stars to find direction and latitude, but he needed to know the time, both on the ship and at a reference point, to find longitude. Unfortunately, an accurate source of time measurement at sea did not exist.
In 1714, the British government decided to offer a large reward to anyone who could solve the problem. Learned men and great thinkers tried unsuccessfully to work out a solution. They declared it unsolvable!
Carpenter and clockmaker John Harrison was intrigued; he thought he might have a solution. For years he strived to design and construct a clock that worked at sea. Harrison's solution enabled sailors to cross the oceans of the world safely, but it took a king to make sure he received the prize he had earned.
A detailed map of the world in the 1700s and a timeline of Harrison's work on the longitude problem are included in this triumphant tale of ingenuity and innovation.
First published at the age of thirteen, Joan Marie Galat is a frequent presenter, both in person and via Skype. She offers workshops and residencies to start school newspapers and radio stations, encourages students to realize their writing dreams, and points out the importance of being a good writer in all careers. As a best-selling, award-winning author, Galat creates books that give young readers entrï¿½e into the realms of celestial science and myth. She provides freelance writing and training from her home near Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada.
Wes Lowe started drawing at an early age, preferring sketching to doing homework. Lowe began his career in commercial art as a package designer but soon turned to book illustration as a specialty. He has illustrated numerous award-winning books and is known for his aviation and marine paintings. Lowe is a member of the American Society of Aviation Artists and the Canadian Aviation Artists Association and calls Roberts Creek, British Columbia, Canada home.
About the Author
Joan Marie Galat is an award-winning author who creates books that give young readers entrée into the realms of celestial science and myth. First published at the age of thirteen, Galat is a frequent presenter, both in person and via Skype. She is the author of the best-selling Dot to Dot in the Sky Series for young children. Galat also provides freelance writing and training from her home near Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada.
Wes Lowe has illustrated numerous award-winning books and is known for his aviation and marine paintings. He began his career in commercial art as a package designer but soon turned to book illustration. Lowe is a member of the American Society of Aviation Artists and the Canadian Aviation Artists Association and calls Roberts Creek, British Columbia, Canada, home.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Some primitive methods of calculating longitude were fraught with error. After a huge sailing accident involving many English ships, the English government set a contest offering to reward the person who could build a tool for measuring longitude 20,000 pounds. The book explains the use of time to calculate longitude if a ship could possess two accurate clocks. John Harrison invented many iterations of clocks that would work at sea, and he was eventually awarded the prize money.
For any kids interested in science and history, this book would be a treat. It's text heavy, so it's best suited for children ages 8-10, but it's a very interesting story. We've come along way now with GPS and satellite technology, but the origins are always good to learn as well.
The book is based on facts about John Harrison, an Englishman, who took the challenge to created a clock which would assist sailors in determining the longitude. The sailors knew how to find the latitude and directions of north, south, east and west, but time differences were a puzzle and often sailors were lost or crashed into rocks while traveling.
The amazing part of this was John Harrison was using materials available in the year of 1737. He worked on his invention for over 40 years. What a wonderful discovery by this intelligent man.
I know you and your child will enjoy this story.
*I received this for review - all opinions are my own*
I found this story intriguing, especially since our family has recently taken up cruising as a favorite past time. I know nowadays technology guides ships, but the information used to create the programs within these devices had to come from somewhere. The Discovery of Longitude reveals just where. I learned a great deal from this story and believe it is a wonderful teaching tool for children.
The illustrations are amazing and add to the story, making the author's lesson even easier for children to understand.
I highly recommend picking up a copy of The Discovery of Longitude.