As I indicated in the “History is slipping away" thread, I decided to take on as a retirement project researching the history of the Unitron Company. Since my decision to proceed, I’ve communicated with Fred and Tom in developing a way ahead…and greatly appreciate their input and encouragement. I’ve also started some research and begun making some contacts. My primary focus right now is getting a website on-line similar to the one Tom developed for Cave-Astrola that will be used for collecting and sharing information.
Given the passage of time, not certain how much we as a community will be able to add to what is already known about Unitron the Company, but initial indications are that sources are still around to provide personal insight into the company. The two primary objectives I propose for this project:
1. Develop a comprehensive and verifiable history of the Unitron Company from 1951 until the early 90s that captures some of the “personality” of the company. I plan to take advantage of what has already been written in the form of articles and interviews by getting permission to post or using links where copyrights are a problem. As I mentioned in an earlier post, Company Seven has a good article; there is also a well-researched article written by John Siple and published in the Rose City Astronomer Newsletter, January 2003. You probably recognize John’s name as the person who did some research on the greenish multi-coated objective lenses, and who has written several articles on classic scopes; see http://www.rosecitya...g/news/2003.pdf for his article, “Unitron Refractor Telescopes”;
2. Document the existing 5 inch and 6 inch scopes; according to my Unitron Company source there is no record of production numbers nor purchasers; the global CN community will be a great help with achieving this objective.
While attending the Almost Heaven Star Party at The Mountain Institute (TMI) in West Virginia this past week, I met and spoke with Bob Naeye, Editor-in Chief for Sky and Telescope about this project. I was hoping S&T would have some easily accessible archives to help in my research, but unfortunately that was not the case. He did say though that an article on the history of Unitron would be of interest to S&T. Maybe this should be another objective of this project.
I’ll advise when the website is up and running. For now if anyone has any relevant source/contact information, or any comments they want to pass along, please forward to the email address I’ve established for this project: UnitronHistory2014@gmail.com.