Priority: Normal
To: cambridge-conference <>
From: JR Tate <>
Subject: Gene Shoemaker
Date sent: Fri, 18 Jul 97 21:13:33 GMT

I have just received this, and can hardly believe the news. In
addition to his more famous work Gene was a staunch supporter of
Spaceguard UK, and gave us tremendous support.

The world has lost a great man, and our sympathies go to Carolyn at
this time.


NEO News (7/18/97)


I just received the shocking and tragic news of the death of Gene
Shoemaker, the founder and leading advocate of many NEO studies.
Truly he is the father of our field of science. Following is the initial
notice posted by Sky & Telescope.

David Morrison


Gene Shoemaker, 1928 - 1997

The world has lost one of its most renowned scientists with the death
of Eugene Shoemaker at age 69. On the afternoon of July 18th, Gene and his
wife, Carolyn, were involved in a car accident in central Australia. He was fatally
injured; Carolyn suffered broken ribs but is expected to recover. The pair
had arrived in Australia just six days before to study some of the continent's
numerous impact craters -- an annual trek Down Under that they'd made a habit
in recent years.

Best known for his pioneering work in elucidating the mechanics of
impacts and in the discovery of Earth-crossing bodies, Gene gained worldwide fame
in March 1993 for his discovery, with Carolyn and colleague David Levy, of a
comet that would strike Jupiter 16 months later. Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 was just
one of the finds that made this husband-wife team the leading comet discoverers
of this century. They are also credited with discovering more than 800
asteroids. But the one research interest he never tired of was Meteor Crater, the
kilometer-wide pit east of Flagstaff, Arizona.

While still in his teens, Gene realized that someday astronauts would
walk on the Moon, and from that point forward his whole professional life
would be directed toward becoming one of them. But a medical condition
prevented him from ever being selected for the Apollo program. "Not going to the
Moon and banging on it with my own hammer has been the biggest disappointment
in life," he said last year. "But then, I probably wouldn't have gone to
Palomar Observatory to take some 25,000 films of the night sky with Carolyn
-- she scanned them all -- and we wouldn't have had the thrills of finding
those funny things that go bump in the night."


Date sent: Fri, 18 Jul 1997 09:35:55 -0400 (EDT)
From: Benny J Peiser <>
Priority: NORMAL

Climate variation and the rise and fall of an Andean civilization
M. W. Binford, A.L. Kolata, M. Brenner, J. M. Janusek, M. T. Seddon,
M. Abbott, J. H. Curtis. In: QUATERNARY RESEARCH, 1997, Vol.47, No.2,

Paleolimnological and archaeological records that span 3500 years from
Lake Titicaca and the surrounding Bolivian-Peruvian altiplano
demonstrate that the emergence of agriculture (ca. 1500 B.C.) and the
collapse of the Tiwanaku civilization (ca. A.D. 1100) coincided with
periods of abrupt, profound climate change. The timing and magnitude of
climate changes are inferred from stratigraphic evidence of lake-level
variation recorded in C-14-dated lake-sediment cores. Paleolake levels
provide estimates of drainage basin water balance. Archaeological
evidence establishes spatial and temporal patterns of agricultural
field use and abandonment. Prior to 1500 B.C., aridity in the altiplano
precluded intensive agriculture. During a wetter period from 1500 B.C.
to A.D. 1100, the Tiwanaku civilization and its immediate predecessors
developed specialized agricultural methods that stimulated population
growth and sustained large human settlements. A prolonged drier period
(ca. A.D. 1100-1400) caused declining agricultural production, field
abandonment, and cultural collapse.

CCCMENU CCC for 1997