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Smithsonian Institution Shelter

The Smithsonian Institution Shelter, also known as the Mount Whitney Summit Shelter and the Mount Whitney Hut, was built in 1909 on the summit plateau of Mount Whitney, in the Sierra Nevada within Sequoia National Park, in California.

Smithsonian Institution Shelter
The Smithsonian Institution Shelter, against the backdrop of the Sierra.
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Nearest cityLone Pine, California
Coordinates36°34′43″N118°17′32″W /36.57861°N 118.29222°W /36.57861; -118.29222Coordinates: 36°34′43″N118°17′32″W /36.57861°N 118.29222°W /36.57861; -118.29222
Built1909
ArchitectArch, Speiden & Speiden
Architectural styleRustic architecture
NRHP reference No.77000119
Added to NRHPMarch 08, 1977

The shelter at the summit was proposed after Byrd Surby, a U.S. Fisheries employee, was struck and killed by lightning on the summit in 1904. The shelter was built to house scientists who used the 14,505-foot summit to study high-altitude phenomena in the time before sustained high-altitude flight was possible.

In 1909 the site was used by Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory director Charles Greeley Abbot to conduct spectroscopic observations of Mars to investigate the existence of water on the planet. Other studies included observations of cosmic rays and nocturnal radiation.

Although the structure was built in part as a shelter from storms, hikers are now warned against seeking shelter there during lightning storms.

Gustave F. Marsh, the builder of the summit trail, built the shelter with funding from the Smithsonian Institution, with assistance from the Lick Observatory. The mortared granite shelter comprises three rooms in a line with windows in each and doors in the north and south rooms. The roof is corrugated metal on a steel truss frame. The materials to build the shelter were carried to the summit by donkeys. The shelter has a log book hikers may sign. The site has been considered for National Historic Landmark status, but has not been recommended for submission yet. However, in 1977 the Smithsonian Institution Shelter was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

  1. "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. April 15, 2008.
  2. "SAO Mount Whitney Shelter Erected". Smithsonian Institution Research Information System. 2008-12-09.
  3. "Mt. Whitney's Early Days". Mount Whitney History. Lone Pine Chamber of Commerce. 2008-12-09. Archived from the original on 2012-05-14.
  4. "Smithsonian Institution Shelter". List of Classified Structures. National Park Service. 2008-12-09.
  5. Py-Lieberman, Beth (27 August 2009). "The Mount Whitney Hut Turns 100". Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved24 March 2019.
  6. "National Register Sites considered but not recommended for designation as National Historic Landmarks". National Historic Landmarks: Astronomy and Astrophysics, Other Sites. National Park Service. 2008-12-09.
Wikimedia Commons has media related toSmithsonian Institution Shelter.


Smithsonian Institution Shelter
Smithsonian Institution Shelter Language Watch Edit The Smithsonian Institution Shelter also known as the Mount Whitney Summit Shelter and the Mount Whitney Hut was built in 1909 on the summit plateau of Mount Whitney in the Sierra Nevada within Sequoia National Park in California Smithsonian Institution ShelterU S National Register of Historic PlacesThe Smithsonian Institution Shelter against the backdrop of the Sierra Show map of CaliforniaShow map of the United StatesNearest cityLone Pine CaliforniaCoordinates36 34 43 N 118 17 32 W 36 57861 N 118 29222 W 36 57861 118 29222 Coordinates 36 34 43 N 118 17 32 W 36 57861 N 118 29222 W 36 57861 118 29222Built1909ArchitectArch Speiden amp SpeidenArchitectural styleRustic architectureNRHP reference No 77000119Added to NRHPMarch 08 1977 1 History EditThe shelter at the summit was proposed after Byrd Surby a U S Fisheries employee was struck and killed by lightning on the summit in 1904 The shelter was built to house scientists who used the 14 505 foot summit to study high altitude phenomena in the time before sustained high altitude flight was possible In 1909 the site was used by Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory director Charles Greeley Abbot to conduct spectroscopic observations of Mars to investigate the existence of water on the planet Other studies included observations of cosmic rays and nocturnal radiation 2 3 Although the structure was built in part as a shelter from storms hikers are now warned against seeking shelter there during lightning storms Landmark EditGustave F Marsh the builder of the summit trail built the shelter with funding from the Smithsonian Institution with assistance from the Lick Observatory The mortared granite shelter comprises three rooms in a line with windows in each and doors in the north and south rooms The roof is corrugated metal on a steel truss frame 4 The materials to build the shelter were carried to the summit by donkeys 5 The shelter has a log book hikers may sign The site has been considered for National Historic Landmark status but has not been recommended for submission yet 6 However in 1977 the Smithsonian Institution Shelter was placed on the National Register of Historic Places References Edit National Register Information System National Register of Historic Places National Park Service April 15 2008 SAO Mount Whitney Shelter Erected Smithsonian Institution Research Information System 2008 12 09 Mt Whitney s Early Days Mount Whitney History Lone Pine Chamber of Commerce 2008 12 09 Archived from the original on 2012 05 14 Smithsonian Institution Shelter List of Classified Structures National Park Service 2008 12 09 Py Lieberman Beth 27 August 2009 The Mount Whitney Hut Turns 100 Smithsonian Magazine Retrieved 24 March 2019 National Register Sites considered but not recommended for designation as National Historic Landmarks National Historic Landmarks Astronomy and Astrophysics Other Sites National Park Service 2008 12 09 Wikimedia Commons has media related to Smithsonian Institution Shelter This article about a property in Inyo County California on the National Register of Historic Places is a stub You can help Wikipedia by expanding it vte This Smithsonian Institution article is a stub You can help Wikipedia by expanding it vte Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Smithsonian Institution Shelter amp oldid 970844683, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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