Saturday was the 50th anniversary of a memorable event. There was a total solar eclipse on July 20, 1963, along a narrow path that started at sunrise on the Japanese Island of Hokkaido and then rolled northeast across Alaska and then southeast through central and southern Canada, eventually passing across Maine and southern Nova Scotia before heading on out to sea. As a small child living in Maine, I remember the excitement of the day. For weeks, we were instructed to use special paper glasses with film to protect our eyes. We practiced holding the film to the sun. A few folks argued that the glasses weren’t necessary.
Ray Geiger, my dad and Farmers’ Almanac editor, was especially excited with this astronomical event of a century. So, he bought hundreds of special glasses and organized a viewing party. Boy, this was going to be good. Well, just before viewing, clouds rolled in and we missed it all. This Peanuts cartoon reminds me of why I only view eclipses on TV.
When I start to recall things that happened 50 years ago, it is a sad reminder that, yes, I am getting old. Does anyone else remember the eclipse of July 20, 1963?