Visitor Center

Martz Observatory – circa 1977

A Brief History of the Martz-Kohl Observatory in a timeline

1944 Marshal and Mary Martz move to Jamestown, NY from Williamsport, Pa.

1952 The Martz’s purchase the land on Robbin Hill Road in Frewsburg, NY.

1954 Marshal purchases a 18.5″ Mirror blank.

1954 Marshal along with other help starts building the Martz Observatory.

1955 Marshal starts teaching evening Astronomy Class at Jamestown Community College.

1956 August Marshal finishes his first 8″ Mirror.

1958 The Astronomers Guild starts grinding the 24″ Mirror.

1962 24″ mirror completed and silvered ready for star testing.

1963 Astronomers Guild closes Jamestown Observatory and starts on new building in Gerry NY.

1963 April 30″ mirror blank purchased for Martz Observatory.

1965 Martz Observatory completed telescope mount and tube finished.

1968 September 30″ Mirror finished and Aluminized.

1972 July 17-19 Astronomy Symposium at Jamestown Community College 25 Astronomers attend.

1976 May Marshal retires from Jamestown Community College as a Professor Emeritus.

1977 The Martz’s add on additions to the observatory to live there full time.

1978 September Marshall starts the Marshal Martz Memorial Astronomical Association.

1979 August 21st Marshal passes at age 68 Mary continues to live at the observatory.

1979-2002 Mary maintains her residency at the observatory allows use of the facilities.

1989 February original 30″ mirror removed and replaced with new 30″ mirror.

1990 July Dr Kohls Observatory was started to hold a 20″ DFM Cassegran Telescope.

1991 July Dr Kohls observatory finished in Lakewood, NY.

2002 Richard Carlson donates 24″ Guild telescope tube and mirrors to MMMAAI.

2003 Observatory turned over to Marshal Martz Memorial Astronomical Assoc. Inc.

2004 Decision made to remove original 30″ telescope and replace with 24″ Guild scope.

2004 Construction to complete the 24″ telescope mount started.

2007 February 19th Mary passes at age 96.

2007 November 24″ finished, installed and seeing first light in the Martz Dome.

2012 Ron Kohl makes offer to donate his observatory to the MMMAAI.

2012 February MMMAAI purchases the RC Optical 16″ Cassegrain telescope.

2014 August Construction begins on moving Dr Kohls obseratory to Robbin Hill.

2014 November construction finished. New Classroom and Control Room added.

2015 August to November construction of office, kitchen, restroom and roll-off roof.

2016 May construction finished on rear storage/garage area.

2018 March razed 1977 additions added planetarium, reception room and garage.

2018 September last of construction was finished building now completed.

Martz-Kohl Observatory – 2021