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Jacobus C. Kapteyn

AKA Jacobus Cornelius Kapteyn

Born: 19-Jan-1851
Birthplace: Barneveld, Netherlands
Died: 18-Jun-1922
Location of death: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Cause of death: unspecified

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Astronomer

Nationality: Netherlands
Executive summary: Star streaming

Jacobus C. Kapteyn was a founder of modern statistical astronomy, using night photography and trigonometric parallax to measure the proper motion of stars. Through this technique he discovered star streaming, showing that stars could be divided into two streams apparently moving in opposite directions, a phenomenon now recognized as evidence that the Milky Way galaxy is perpetually rotating. He also oversaw the cataloging of more than 450,000 southern stars, conducted statistical studies of stars by distance, magnitudes, position, and motions, and organized a world-wide effort of astronomers to determine the shape and structure of the Galaxy. In 1897 he discovered a faint red dwarf with an eccentric and retrograde Galactic orbit, which after his death was named in his honor Kapteyn's Star.

Father: Gerrit Jacobus Kapteyn (schoolmaster, b. 4-Jan-1812, d. 26-Jul-1879)
Mother: Elisabeth Cornelia Koopmans Kapteyn (b. 5-Nov-1814, m. 12-Mar-1837, d. 24-Nov-1896)
Brother: Paulus Huibert Kapteyn (b. 4-Jan-1838, d. 16-Jul-1864)
Brother: Huiberd Paulus Kapteyn (b. 10-Jul-1839, d. 23-Sep-1914)
Sister: Maria Adriana Kapteyn De Jonge (b. 3-Apr-1841, d. 31-Dec-1931)
Brother: Adriaan Pieter Marinus Kapteyn (b. 21-Nov-1841, d. 19-Dec-1910)
Sister: Machtelina Elisabeth Kapteyn Van Goor (b. 21-Aug-1844, d. 26-Oct-1914)
Brother: Nicolaas Pieter Kapteyn (b. 28-Oct-1845, d. 18-May-1916)
Sister: Albertina Maria Kapteyn (b. 28-Feb-1847, d. 20-Jan-1927)
Brother: Albertus Philippus Kapteyn (Westinghouse engineer, b. 31-Mar-1848, d. 12-Jan-1927)
Brother: Willem Kapteyn (b. 16-Aug-1849, d. 6-Dec-1927)
Brother: Frederik Willem Hendrik Kapteyn (b. 13-Jan-1853, d. 5-Dec-1920)
Brother: Johannes Catharinus Kapteyn (b. 11-Jan-1854, d. 24-Jun-1895)
Sister: Cornelia Louise Alexandra Kapteyn (b. 11-Aug-1855, d. 14-Nov-1909)
Brother: Marius Kapteyn (b. 13-May-1857, d. 25-Jul-1859)
Sister: Agatha Kapteyn (b. 21-Jun-1862, d. 1-May-1921)
Wife: Catharina Kalshoven Kapteyn (b. 19-Jun-1855, m. 17-Jul-1879, two daughters, one son)
Daughter: Jacoba Cornelia Kapteyn Noordenbos (b. 31-May-1880, d. 15-Oct-1956)
Daughter: Henriette Mariet Augustina Albertina Kapteyn Hertzsprung Hudig (author, b. 16-Nov-1881)
Son: Gerrit Jacobus Kapteyn (b. 13-Dec-1883, d. 25-Dec-1937)

    High School: Benno School, Barneveld, Netherlands
    University: BS, University of Utrecht (1872)
    University: PhD, University of Utrecht (1875)
    Scholar: Leiden Observatory, University of Leiden (1875-78)
    Professor: Astronomy and Theoretical Mechanics, Groningen University (1878-1921)
    Administrator: Director of Groningen Observatory, Groningen University (1904-21)

    Bruce Medal 1913
    James Craig Watson Medal 1913
    Royal Astronomical Society Gold Medal 1902
    French Academy of Sciences Corresponding Member
    International Astronomical Union
    Royal Society
    Royal Society of Edinburgh
    Lunar Crater Crater Kapteyn
    Asteroid Namesake 818 Kapteynia


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