Preparations for Solar Broadcast

ID: SIA2011-0166 and 32603-12

Creator: Tolman, Ruel P (Ruel Pardee) 1878-1954

Form/Genre: Photographic print

Date: September 30, 1936

Citation: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7433, Box 3, Folder: Scrapbook II, 1934-1942, A-N

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In the South Yard behind the Smithsonian Institution Building or "Castle", preparations are being made for a solar broadcast on September 30, 1936, when fifth Smithsonian Secretary and astrophysicist Charles G. Abbot would test his solar radiation steam boiler of his design. The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) filmed the test and by operating an electric generator a short program was broadcast by solar power. The Arts and Industries building can be seen beyond the fence and a member of the Guard Force stands observing the erection of the solar boiler by Smithsonian Institution employees.


  • Abbot, C. G (Charles Greeley) b. 1872
  • National Broadcasting Company (NBC)
  • Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
  • Guard Force
  • Arts and Industries Building
  • South Yard
  • Smithsonian Institution Building (Washington, D.C.)


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


  • This image was taken by Ruel P. Tolman, former Director of Smithsonian National Collection of Fine Arts, and is included in a scrapbook of photographs of Smithsonian staff, grounds and buildings, exhibitions, and Washington, D.C. scenes. (Section A)
  • See Neg. #s SIA2011-0166 through SIA2011-0173 and 4694C for other views of the Solar Boiler preparation.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7433, Box 3, Folder: Scrapbook II, 1934-1942, A-N

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,


September 30, 1936

Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions


  • Astrophysicists
  • Secretariats
  • Astrophysics
  • Scientific apparatus and instruments
  • Secretaries
  • Inventions
  • Solar energy
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • Personnel management
  • Employees
  • Solar Boiler
  • Special events
  • Event
  • Smithsonian Institution--Employees


  • Photographic print
  • Event
  • Group, candid

ID Number

SIA2011-0166 and 32603-12

Physical description

Number of Images: 1 ; Color: Sepia ; Size: 2.25w x 2.25h; Type of Image: Event; Group, candid; Medium: Photographic print

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