Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

Highland Park  

Sundial: 400
State/Province:  Illinois Country:  USA
Dial Type:  Analemmatic Dial Condition:  Good
  Latitude and Longitude: 42° 11.271' N  87° 48.011' W
Location:
  • On the southwest corner of St. John's Ave. and Elm Place, adjacent to the parking lot and across from the Highland Park Bank.
 
Description:
  • A nicely done analemmatic dial approximately 15 feet across with a grey granite zodiac walkway. The granite walkway has a central line, crossed with month marks for standing at the date of the year. An unusual feature of the dial is that the Equation of Time (EoT) correcting solar time to civil time is given at the left and right edges of the dial. On the first, tenth, and twentieth of each month the EoT is inscribed to the nearest minute. The walkway is surrounded by one row of dark brick then encompassed by a large plaza of light red brick. Embedded in the plaza are small square Roman numeral hour marks, arranged for summer viewing with 1pm set to north. The plaza is in a nicely landscape area of grass, bushes, perennials, three large pots of flowers and a bench..

    At the south end of the dial walkway engraved into the granite reads "Analemmatic Sundial" "To read correct time stand on center line next to today's date. Your shadow pointing to hour posts shows sun time. To obtain daylight saving time, make correction of the minutes shown near date. Presented to the city of Highland Park Illinois by the Highland Park Youth Committee. Designed by Jerome V. Man" followed by the quote from Ben Franklin and the US Bicentennial symbol.

    The "Times Square Analemmatic Sundial" has seen many changes over the last nearly 50 years. The idea and design of creating a sundial where your body is the gnomon came from sundial hobbyist Jerome V. Man. He suggested it to the Highland Park council in 1974 as a symbol for the US bicentennial in 1976. John Jackson, coordinator of the Highland Park Youth Committee volunteered his group's assistance who not only provided construction labor, but donated $1400 need for stones and landscaping. In addition to the hour stones set in an ellipse, they poured a concrete base to hold the engraved zodiac walkway.

    The original location of the the sundial was at the southwest corner of Central Ave. and St. John's Ave. where there was a posted clock on the northeast corner of the bank, and hence the name Time Square Analemmatic Sundial. Various walkway surrounds of grass, brick and pavers were used to keep up the sundial. The sundial went into storage from circa 2005-2008 making room for a war memorial at the original location. In August 2008 the sundial was reinstalled on the corner of St. John's Ave. and Elm Place one block to the north. It was publicly dedicated on June 27, 2009. The dial kept its distinctive zodiac walkway but was embedded in a light red brick circular plaza and the original vertical stone markers were replaced by flat hourly markers embedded into the plaza.
 
General Information:Inscription:
  • Owner: City of Highland Park
  • "DOST THOU LOVE LIFE? THEN DO NOT SQUANDER TIME FOR THAT IS THE STUFF LIFE IS MADE OF ” — BENJAMIN FRANKLIN.
  • Designer: Jerome V. Man
  • Builder: Youth Committee
  • Construction Date: 1976; rededicated June 27, 2009
 

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Last Revised: 2020-09-11 18:46:38

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