The Planet Mars

Special Collections > Keystone Slides
tiff scanned file from original glass slide
If you look at the sky on a clear night you will see a countless number of "stars". Some are very bright, others are very dim, and others are clustered so thickly together that they form a great Milky Way across the heavens. The heavenly bodies are divided into planets, stars, and comets or meteors. The word planet means wanderer. Here is one of these wanderers of the sky. It is the red planet Mars. It is the nearest planet neighbor of the Earth. By means of high-power telescopes, we know that its surface is made up of fixed dark and light areas. These are possibly regions of vegetation and desert land. There are on the planet no great bodies of water like our oceans. It has a thin atmosphere in which clouds are almost never seen. The small white spot on the upper part of the disk is the south polar cap. It is probably snow. The cap shown here is about 500 miles across. A few months earlier it covered a much larger area. But the heat of the summer of Mars melted most of it. During the winter of Mars, in its greatest extent the cap is about 2,000 miles across. The mean distance of Mars from the sun is 142,000,000 miles. Its diameter is 4,300 miles, a little over half that of the Earth. Its distance from us when this view was taken, was 48,000,000 miles. We have no proof that there is any life on the planet. Some astronomers believe people live there now. They base their guesses on what are called the "Martian Canals". These appear through the telescope as a network of dark lines. But they may be something entirely different from canals-nobody knows. Keystone ID: 16766 Note: All titles, descriptions, and location coordinates are from the original Keystone Slide documentation as supplied by the Keystone View Company. No text has been edited or changed.
Copyright by the Keystone View Company. The original slides are housed in McConnell Library's Special Collections.