World's Largest Ceiling Clock & Foucault Pendulum
Thanks to the generosity of local philanthropist Lucille Caudill Little, the Central Library is privileged to house a five-story Foucault pendulum, the world’s largest ceiling clock, and a low-relief frieze depicting the history of the horse.
What began as a dream turned into reality when nationally recognized artist and project designer Adalin Wichman gave her time and experience to this project. In addition to her financial and personal generosity, Mrs. Wichman donated her hand sketches of horses and jockeys which line the rotunda and created the award winning terrazzo floor over which the pendulum oscillates.
The library is filled with vast knowledge and tools for learning. The Foucault Pendulum, so named by its inventor French physicist, Jean Bernard Foucault (pronounced foo-ko), is an outstanding example of art meeting education. As the Pendulum swings back and forth, it appears to be rotating in a circle. This is not an optical illusion, but proof of the earth’s rotation. The pendulum remains on course -it is the earth which is rotating around the pendulum!
This has proven to be an excellent learning tool for local schools. The Library has created a teachers guide, distributed to 206 schools in 17 counties and 8 home schools, as well as giving an average of one school tour per week.
While it took months to install this piece of scientific artwork, it will last for generations as a learning resource and visual joy for all that enter the library.