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Alvan Clark (March 8, 1804August 19, 1887), born in Ashfieldmarker, Massachusettsmarker, the descendant of a Cape Cod whaling family of English ancestry,[58265] was an Americanmarker astronomer and telescope maker. He was a portrait painter and engraver, but at the age of 40 become involved in telescope making. Using glass blanks made by Chance Brothersmarker of Birmingham and Feil-Mantois of Paris, his firm Alvan Clark & Sons ground lenses for refracting telescopes, including the largest in the world at the time: the at Dearborn Observatorymarker at the Old University of Chicago (the lens was originally intended for Ole Missmarker), the two telescopes at the United States Naval Observatorymarker and McCormick Observatorymarker, the at Pulkovo Observatorymarker (destroyed in the Siege of Leningrad; only the lens survives), the telescope at Lick Observatorymarker (still third-largest) and later the at Yerkes Observatorymarker, which remains the largest successful refracting telescope in the world. One of Clark's sons, Alvan Graham Clark, discovered the dim companion of Sirius. His other son was George Bassett Clark; both sons were partners in the firm.

Two craters bear his name. The Clarkmarker on the Moon is joinly named for him and his son, Alvan Graham Clark, and one on Mars is named in his honor.

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