Founding Day

2020-10-15 19:24:12.000 – Mount Washington Observatory Staff, Weather Observers


Today we celebrate the founding of Mount Washington Observatory…
Setting the stage on October 15, 1932, Bob Monahan, Sal Pagliuca, Alex MacKenzie, and Joe Dodge set up a permanent presence on the summit. Using funds obtained from a research grant and a few private donors, the Mount Washington Observatory was formally established, with a mission of advancing the understanding of weather, climate, and the mountain itself.
Photo 1. Original four observersPhoto 1. Original four observers
Just two years later, on April 12, 1934 the Observatory captured what was then the fastest surface wind speed ever observed by man, at 231 mph. This thrust Mount Washington into the spotlight, and highlighted the value in having a mountaintop weather station.
Due to their steadfast dedication and the Observatory staff that followed, this mountain top weather station remains a unique operation staffed 365 days a year and proudly maintains one of the longest running climate records in North America. Now 88 years rich in history we continue to gather, disseminate and analyze daily weather data; to contribute to the critical, long-term weather and climate record essential to scientific understanding of weather and climate in a unique, extreme environment.
Photo 2. Present day observersPhoto 2. Present day observers
While we at the Observatory are extremely proud to celebrate our history, it is only a fraction of what makes the day so special. None of it would have been possible without the support of our donors and members! Thank you to everyone who has had a hand in making the Observatory what it is today, we genuinely couldn’t do it without you!


Mount Washington Observatory Staff, Weather Observers

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