Star Cluster

The 24-inch Bruce telescope in Arequipa, Peru. Copyright 2004 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. Reproduced with permission of Harvard Collge Observatory.

The Small Magellanic Cloud was named for the explorer Ferdinand Magellan, who first observed it during his circumnavigation of the world. Today we know it is a small satellite galaxy of our own Milky Way. Since the Magellanic Cloud could only be observed from the southern hemisphere, Leavitt used photos taken by Harvard’s observing station in Arequipa, Peru.

Here is a modern view of the Large Magellanic Cloud from the Hubble Space Telescope: