Cosmic Times

1929 Cosmic Times Articles

1929 Poster

This poster is the second edition of the Cosmic Times, with the publication date chosen to coincide with the announcement of Hubble's results which found that the Universe was expanding. These results were contrary to Einstein's assumption of a static Universe. In addition, in order to show that the galaxies were all moving away from us, Hubble first showed that there were other galaxies outside the Milky Way.

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Content Overview

The headline story in this 1929 issue is that Edwin Hubble has discovered that the Universe is expanding. The idea of an expanding Universe is contrary to Einstein's assumption of a static Universe, and while Einstein was not convinced of the veracity of Hubble's results, the astronomical community had generally accepted them. This discovery came on the heels of the discovery that the Milky Way is not the only galaxy in the Universe, which was determined in 1920, also by Hubble.


  • 1929 Poster (printable at 8.5" x 11" or at its full size of 24" x 33"): pdf
  • 1929 Newsletters:
    • Early Edition (text for grades 7-8): pdf
    • Home Edition (text for grades 9-10): pdf
    • Late Edition (poster text, for grades 11-12): pdf
  • 1929 Questions for Understanding: doc, pdf
  • 1929 Glossary: doc, pdf
  • Full Cosmic Times Glossary: doc, pdf
  • Educator's guide for all Cosmic Times editions: doc, pdf


  • Age of the universe: 2 Billion Years; Size of the universe: 200 Million Light Years
    Learn more about the age and size →
  • Andromeda Nebula Lies Outside Milky Way Galaxy
  • "Great Debate" Resolved
    • Summary: Hubble's distance to the Andromeda Nebula resolves the debate held in 1920 between Harlow Shapley and Heber Curtis over whether the spiral nebulae were part of our Galaxy or outside it.
    • Thread: Size of the Universe
    • Additional background and information →
  • Universe is Expanding
  • Sidebar: The Minds atop Mount Wilson
  • Sidebar: Classifying Nebulae
  • In Their Own Words
    • Summary: Snippets of papers published by other astronomers during this time. The snippet here is from Hubble about observing distant objects in the Universe.

Lesson Plans

Download a .zip file containing all 1929 lessons with their associated handouts: doc, pdf
Note: the pdf handouts for the "Discovering the Milky Way" and "Unsung Heroes" lessons are included in the .doc zip bundle.

  • Discovering the Milky Way
    • Overview: Students look at historic astronomical data to find the pattern originally seen by Henrietta Leavitt.
    • Grades: high school
    • Topics: Physics, Astronomy
    • Downloads
  • Just How Far is that Star?
    • Overview: Students work with light meters to determine how astronomers find distances to objects of known brightness.
    • Grades: high school
    • Topics: Physics, Astronomy
    • Download
  • Cosmic CSI
    • Overview: Students explore what spectra from different elements looks like and how astronomers can learn composition of objects with this tool.
    • Grades: middle school
    • Topics: Earth Science, Physical Science, Chemistry
    • Download
      • Lesson Plan: doc, pdf
      • Handout with sample spectra to view and identify: pdf
  • Determining the Universe
    • Overview: Students measure the size of several galaxies to reproduce a plot of Hubble's Law.
    • Grades: high school
    • Topics: Physics, Astronomy
    • Download
      • Lesson Plan: doc, pdf
      • Supporting Materials:
        • Appendix A: The Rule of 57: doc, pdf
        • Appendix B: Galaxy Images: doc, pdf
        • Appendix C: Galaxy Fact Cards: doc, pdf
        • Appendix D: Questions for Students: doc, pdf
  • Unsung Heroes of Science
    • Overview: Students investigate figures in science who are often overlooked.
    • Grades: middle school and high school
    • Topics: Multidisciplinary
    • Download

Style Notes

The language in the 1929 newspaper mimics the style of writing that would have appeared in a real 1929 newspaper. The language and sentence structure may be a bit difficult for your students to read; however, we have provided three versions of the text in newletter form: an Early Edition aimed at 7-8 graders, a Home Edition aimed at 9-10 grades (with text from the online edition), and a Late Edition aimed at 11-12 grades (with the text from the poster). These, along with a glossary and questions for understanding are available above.

The poster also shows a layout that mimics the papers of the time, however, we have taken some creative license to make it more readable in a classroom setting. Real newspapers of the time would have had 5-7 narrow columns of small type.

A service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Alan Smale (Director), within the Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) at NASA/GSFC