Master Surname Index



Lyman Spitzer

Ancestry of
Lyman Spitzer

Astronomer and Theoretical Physicist


Who was Lyman Spitzer?

Lyman Spitzer (1914–1997) was an American astronomer and theoretical physicist whose groundbreaking contributions revolutionized our understanding of the cosmos. Born in Toledo, Ohio, Spitzer exhibited exceptional intellect from an early age. He earned his Ph.D. in astrophysics from Princeton University in 1938, laying the foundation for a remarkable career.

Spitzer's seminal work focused on the interstellar medium and the dynamics of galaxies. In the 1940s, he proposed the concept of a telescope in space, recognizing the limitations imposed by Earth's atmosphere on astronomical observations. His vision paved the way for the development of the Hubble Space Telescope, launched in 1990, and fundamentally transformed our perspective on the universe. He is also the namesake of the Spitzer Space Telescope, NASA's Infrared Great Observatory, which was launched in 2003. It operated for over 16 years until it was decommissioned in January 2020.

Beyond his astronomical endeavors, Spitzer played a crucial role in advancing the field of plasma physics. His work on the stability of toroidal magnetic confinement in fusion devices significantly contributed to the development of controlled nuclear fusion, with implications for both astrophysics and energy production.

Throughout his career, Spitzer received numerous honors, including the National Medal of Science and the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society. His enduring legacy extends beyond the stars as Spitzer was also an accomplished mountaineer. He was a member of the American Alpine Club and, in 1965, he and Donald Morton became the first to climb Mount Thor in Nunavut, Canada.The "Cutting Edge Grant" which gives $12,000 to mountain climbing expeditions each year was established by Spitzer.


Some of the most recently added connections of famous kin for Lyman Spitzer

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Taylor Lautner

TV and Movie Actor

8th cousin 4 times removed
via John Strong

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Taylor Lautner

TV and Movie Actor

10th cousin 2 times removed
via Jonathan Brewster

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Hiram Bingham

69th Governor of Connecticut

7th cousin 1 time removed
via John Strong

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Henry Wells

Co-Founder of American Express and Wells Fargo and Co.

6th cousin 3 times removed
via Elizabeth Charde

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Harriet Beecher Stowe

Author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin

6th cousin 3 times removed
via Thomas Ford

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Joe Keery

TV and Movie Actor

9th cousin 3 times removed
via Thomas Ford

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Ed Helms

TV and Movie Actor

8th cousin 2 times removed
via John Warham

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Eliphalet Remington

Founder of Remington Arms Company

7th cousin 2 times removed
via Elizabeth Charde

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Shirley Temple

Movie Actress

9th cousin 2 times removed
via Elizabeth Charde

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Samuel Colt

Inventor of the Colt Revolver

7th cousin 2 times removed
via Thomas Ford

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Ben Affleck

Movie Actor

8th cousin 3 times removed
via John Strong

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Sarah Caldwell

1st Female Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera

8th cousin 2 times removed
via John Strong

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Pete Seeger

American Folk Singer

9th cousin 1 time removed
via Thomas Ford

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Colonel Robert Gould Shaw

U.S. Civil War leader of film “Glory” fame

7th cousin 1 time removed
via Jane

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David Hyde Pierce

Stage, TV, and Movie Actor

9th cousin 2 times removed
via Thomas Ford

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Mizuo Peck

TV and Movie Actress

8th cousin 2 times removed
via John Strong

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Kyra Sedgwick

TV and Movie Actress

8th cousin 3 times removed
via Jane

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Clint Eastwood

TV & Film Actor and Director

9th cousin 1 time removed
via Elizabeth Charde

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Mark David Chapman

Assassinated John Lennon

8th cousin 2 times removed
via John Strong

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Glenn Close

Movie, Television, and Stage Actress

8th cousin 2 times removed
via John Strong

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Brooke Shields

Movie Actress and Model

8th cousin 3 times removed
via John Strong

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William Williams

Signer of the Declaration of Independence

4th cousin 5 times removed
via Elizabeth Charde

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William Williams

Signer of the Declaration of Independence

3rd cousin 5 times removed
via John Warham

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Erle Stanley Gardner

Author of the Perry Mason series

8th cousin 1 time removed
via Thomas Ford

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Sarah Palin

9th Governor of Alaska

8th cousin 2 times removed
via John Strong

View entire list of famous kin for Lyman Spitzer

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