Travels with Paul: Mount Adam's Cincinnati Observatory


CINCINNATI, OH -- Opened in 1843, the Mount Adam's Cincinnati Observatory is the oldest public Observatory in the USA, and it is only 26 miles from Lebanon Ohio.

The mission of the observatory is to maintain the integrity and heritage of an historic 19th century observatory and to educate, engage, and inspire our community about astronomy and science.

Ormsby M. Mitchel built the observatory on the peak of the hill that overlooks downtown Cincinnati and known as Mount Ida. On November 9, 1843 when the cornerstone was laid  former President John Quincy Adams spoke and Mount Ida was renamed to Mount Adams in his honor. 

This Merz und Mahle 11 inch telescope was the first public telescope installed in America. 

The original 1843 telescope in operation

A second observatory building was built in 1904  by Alvan Clark & Sons known as the Herget Building where  a 16 inch refractor telescope is housed. It is near the 1843 observatory building and is used for public education programs and graduate research.

To learn more about the Cincinnati Observatory visit or call 513.321.5186

Located at 3489 Observatory Place, Cincinnati, Ohio 45208. The Observatory is opened Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday 12-3pm by appointment only. Tickets are:

  •  $12/adult
  • $7/child (under 18) 
  • Day-of tickets: $15/adult, $10/child

    To see my Cincinnati Observatory photos, please click MY PHOTOS here.

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