Catchers of the Light Books


"This book is truly a magnum opus, a labour of love, and a great work of scholarship. It is authoritative, detailed, thorough, superbly illustrated, well referenced, and all-encompassing. There is no nook or cranny of the history of astronomical photography or its proponents that has not been investigated, noted, and embellished with a relevant image. It is worth every single cent of its price. It is an essential addition to every astronomy library. Anyone with even a vague interest in the development of astrophysics will need to have this book to hand; it is a vital and reliable starting place for any historical research into the last two centuries of astronomical endeavour." Professor David W. Hughes, 'Observatory' magazine, February 2015. Read Full Review Here:

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Great pioneering telescope builders including William Parsons, Andrew Ainslie Common, Bernhard Schmidt, George Willis Ritchey and Henri Chretien; and the use of their telescopes in astronomical research and Astrophotography.
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History of Astrophotography Blog

Come visit 'Catcher' our colourful and vibrant Blog. Learn more about Astrophotography, its Historyand the pioneers who made it all possible.

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Recent Blogs have included a piece on William Parsons, 3rd Earl of Rosse and how his story is that of a Real 'Downton Abbey', the Story of God's astronomer - Father Pietro Angelo Secchi, Ten Famous Astronomical Photographs and the Leprechaun's Guide to Digital Photography - the true story of how the CCD camera was invented.

VIII.0 Astrograph
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VIII.0 Astrograph
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Includes all five chapters on Astrographs:
  • VIII.1: William Parsons;
  • VIII.2: Andrew Ainslie Common;
  • VIII.3: George Willis Ritchey & Henri Chretien;
  • VIII.4: Bernhard Voldemar Schmidt;
  • VIII.5: Photographic Telescopes.
Document profile:
Number of Pages: 204
Number of Snippet Panels: 174
Number of Photographs/Illustrations: 269
Number of Notes/References: 305
Buy Part VIII and make a considerable saving on the cost of the individual chapters.
The author would like to thank: David Arditti, the Ambrosen family, Erik Schmidt, Jochen Schramm, William Clere Leonard Wilmer Brendan Parsons, 7th Earl of Rosse and the Parsons family of Birr Castle; Jean Jacques Meusy, Alan Williams, the Ritchey-Miller family, the Baldet family, the Lagarde family, the Meader Family Association;,;,,; the American Philosophical Society;,, the Henri Chretien Archives, Twentieth Century Fox Studios, the Irish Astronomical Journal, the University of Tartu; the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Greg Smye-Rumsby of the Craig Telescope Project, the Cambridge University Observatory, the Dearborn Observatory, Northwestern University; the Royal Greenwich Observatory, the Harvard College Observatory, the Yerkes Observatory of the University of Chicago, the Potsdam Astrophysical Observatory, the Lick Observatory, the Mount Wilson Observatory, the Mount Palomar Observatory, the Hamburg Observatory and its Museum, the Sydney Observatory, the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, the United States Naval Observatory, the European Space Agency, Officina Stellare; NASA, the William Henry Fox Talbot Archives, De Montford University; the Ordnance Survey; Cathays Cemetery, Cardiff, Wales; SPIE Matthew Hall Engineering;; the US National Archives; the Superintendent of the United States Census for the use of the following items: text extracts from original sources, genealogical information, photographs, maps, drawings and illustrations included in this eBook.
VIII.0 Astrograph
Important Notice

The 'Catchers of the Light' eBooks on the History of Astrophotography can NOW be read on Windows PCs & Androids, Apple Macs and iPads. 

Our Customers can use ANY or ALL of the following THREE different formats to read the 'Catchers of the Light':

  • A PDF (Printed Document Format) version, which can only be read on a PC or an Apple Mac running Windows emulation software. This version does not require Internet Access to be read, please 'right click' and choose 'Save Target As' option to download the free PDF version of the 'Catchers of the Light' Introduction PDF;
  • 'flip page' version for a PC or Mac, which makes use of your Internet Browser. It is compatible with IE, Opera, Firefox, and Safari. An Internet Connection is required for this version to be read.For an example of this new eBook reading experience, please click: 'Catchers of the Light' Introduction (if you are using a PC or Mac to view this page);
  • An iPad or Android 'flip page' version. An Internet Connection is required for this version to be read. For an example of this new eBook reading experience, please click:  'iPad: Catchers of the Light' Introduction (if you are using an iPad or Android to view this page);
  • iBook Versions for all our eBooks are NOW AVAILABLE on the iTunes Store, and can be read using a Mac or iPad.

The free unencrypted introduction to the 'Catchers of the Light' - History of Astrophotography can also be read on any PC, Mac iPad or Kindle with pdf reader software installed. When purchasing the complete 'Catchers of the Light', customers will be provided with Access/Download Instructions for ALL of the above THREE versions of the eBook.

For further information on our eBooks and the 'anti-piracy' software used to protect them, see Our eBooks page.




Includes all five chapters on 'Astrographs',i.e. William Parsons, 3rd Earl of Rosse, Andrew Ainslie Common, George Willis Ritchey & Henri Chretien, Bernhard Schmidt and Photographic Telescopes. Buy at a discounted price.

Dr. Stefan Hughes began his career as a professional astronomer, gaining a 1st Class Honours degree in Astronomy from the University of Leicester in 1974 and his PhD four years later on the 'Resonance Orbits of Artificial Satellites due to Lunisolar Perturbations', which was published as a series of papers in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. After graduating he became a Research fellow in Astronomy, followed by a spell as a lecturer in Applied Mathematics at Queen Mary College, London. Then came a ten year long career as an IT Consultant. In 'mid life' he spent several years retraining as a Genealogist, Record Agent and Architectural Historian, which he practiced for a number of years before moving to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, where for the past ten years he has been imaging the heavens, as well as researching and writing the 'Catchers of the Light' - A History of Astrophotography.

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