Why the Crawford Project? The name takes its inspiration from one of the most remarkable library collections for the history of astronomy and astrology in the world: The Crawford Collection housed at the Royal Observatory in Edinburgh.
The Crawford Collection ranks alongside the top four institutional collections in the history of astronomy in the world: those of the Paris Observatory, the Observatory at Uppsala University, the Royal Astronomical Society in London, and the Pulkova Observatory in St. Petersburg. Despite its undoubted importance, however, is little known among historians of science, and it is scandalously underutilized. This is largely due to the fact that its printed catalogue is rare and can be found only in a small number of research libraries worldwide, thus making it difficult for scholars beyond Edinburgh to know what exactly is in the Collection. ROE and Edinburgh’s historians of science intend to make a sustained effort to make sure that the treasures of the Crawford Collection are better known both nationally and internationally.
This website is one of the places were we aim to make the collection better known, and talk about issues relevant to historians of science and anybody interested in the history of astrology and astronomy in their social, political, and intellectual contexts.