Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

Chattanooga  

Sundial 670
State/Province:  Tennessee Country:  USA
Dial Type:  Horizontal Condition:  Good
Latitude:   35° 03.533' N Longitude:   85° 43.300' W
Location:
  • Creative Discovery Museum
    321 Chestnut St.
    Chattanooga
 
Description:
  • An 18 foot diameter horizontal dial of concrete and pebble with a cast bronze figure of a boy with outstretched arm, the 8 foot high finger tip of which serves as a point-in-space gnomon. The dial face includes hour marks and declination lines. An open book plaque on the bronze statue base gives instructions.

    Substantial surrounding building clutter blocks the sun for much of the day, rendering the dial without shadow.
 
General Information:Inscription:
  • Owner: Creative Discovery Museum
  • Sundial. Before there were cuckoo clocks or wristwatches, there were sundials. People saw that as the sun moved across the sky, the shadows it made moved too. By measuring that movement, they measured time. If you have a watch, it won't agree with the sundial. That's because we don't use "sun time" anymore. We use "civil time," a system that divides the earth into 24 equal time zones. Look at the shadow of the "kid statue" and see what number it's pointing to. You're using the sun to tell time.
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