Since its founding in 1891, many people have passed through the doors of the Vatican Observatory. A quick perusal of our guestbook reveals several Names, including Popes, nobel laureates, astronauts, actors, and saints.
Today’s guestbook entry is from July 11, 1910, when Emily Dobbin made a visit.
Next to her name, Emily Elisabeth Dobbin (1875-1949) wrote, “Inst. Math & Surveying, M.A.H.S., St. Paul, Minn.” (Instructor of Mathematics and Surveying, Mechanic Arts High School, St. Paul MN)
Dobbin was trained as an astronomer, receiving a masters’ degree from the University of Chicago in 1903. She worked at Yerkes Observatory, resulting in two single-authored publications (one on the orbit of the Jovian satellite Amalthea and another on Orion-type stars). However, her astronomical career never really progressed past that point. She taught mathematics, first at the University of Missouri, and then at a high school in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Dobbin is particularly notable for her work in an entirely different field: that of the women’s suffrage movement. She was a member of the St. Paul Suffrage Club at least as early as 1909, and participated in the national movement as well. She served as president of the St. Paul Political Equality Club in 1911. In 1914, a fellow suffragette Clara Hardenbrook was arrested while trying to vote, and Dobbin paid her legal fees.