The Bakersfield Californian | August 22, 1924

Astronomer Believes Mars is Inhabited

(continued from Page 1)…and above all much more intelligent. First, because their planet is several years older than ours and progress is a law; then because they are less governed by matter, the gravity there being less. A man or woman of 150 pounds would weigh only 50 pounds on Mars.

“Besides, as the years are nearly twice as long, the Martian is only fifty when we are ninety-four. Finally, the climate is more equable.”

Mars, Theoretically Declared Habitable

(Associated Press Leased Wire) PARIS, Aug. 23 — Mars, theoretically, is inhabitable, according to Professor Gillaume Bigourdan, official astronomer at the Paris observatory, member of the Academy of Science, and President of Bureau of Longitudes.

“Mars has an atmosphere and, therefore, life is possible. The temperature at the surface of Mars is lower than ours. To give means of merely approximate comparison, it could be said that for a place, occupying on Mars a position corresponding to Paris on our globe, an annual mean temperature which is 53 1/2 degrees Fahrenheit here, would be on Mars 12 to 14 degrees colder. This would permit animal and vegetable life.

“But the possibility does not imply that it is so.”

Discussing possible communications with Mars, Bigourdan continued:

“Our astronomical observations naturally are not for the purpose of searching for hypothetical Martians. We leave that daring enterprise to those who wish to communicate by wireless with the inhabitants of this distant world.”


Attempts to Signal Fantastic Absurdity

(Associated Press Leased Wire) LONDON, Aug. 23 __ At Marconi headquarters here attempts to signal the planet Mars were regarded “a fantastic absurdity.” Signor Marconi, who is on his yacht, it is stated, never has attempted communication with Mars nor given it serious thought.

It was explained that Signor Marconi,like other scientists, had noted the registration of wireless receivers of effects resembling signals of great wave lengths coming apparently from somewhere in space. Moreover, it was said, the inventor may have mentioned sometime the possibility of such signals emanating from the planet.

This merely meant, it was explained, that when the metaphorical pistol was held at Marconi’s head he refused to affirm that such signals did not come from Mars. In other words, the scientist merely observed that it was impossible to prove the negative of the old question that messages do come from Mars.



Six Weeks Hence Best Time for Observation

CHICAGO, Aug. 23 — Scientists and astronomers here are frankly skeptical regarding chances of ascertaining more knowledge of Mars tonight when the planet gets 6,000,000 miles nearer the earth than it was a month ago, or will be a month hence.

The best chances of observation will come six weeks from now, stated Professor Phillip Fox astronomy department of Northwestern university.

“There will be no more chance tonight than any other night to ascertain if Mars is inhabited,” Professor Fox declared.

Believes Dark Spots Indication of Snow

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., Aug. 23 — Immovable dark spots observed on the planet Mars in observations from Lowell observatory here the last two nights possibly may be snow, E. C. Slipper, photographic expert at the observatory, declared.

The spots covered an area of about 10,000 square miles, appearing on the bright-colored areas of the planet, defined as “desert regions” by astronomers, Mr. Slipper said. They were located in exactly the same position as on the previous night, the scientists declared.

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