The Astronomical League is an umbrella organization of amateur astronomy societies. Currently their membership consists of over 280 organizations across the United States, along with a number of Members-at-Large, Patrons, and Supporting members.
Their mission is to promote the science of astronomy by:
- fostering astronomical education;
- providing incentives for astronomical observation and research; and
- assisting communication among amateur astronomical societies.
The Astronomical League provides a number of observing awards to members locating and describing certain specified astronomical objects or events, and produces a periodical publication, The Reflector.
The beginning of the Astronomical League dates back to 1939 when members of eleven amateur astronomical societies met at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. This 1939 meeting was followed by similar meetings in Pittsburgh, Washington DC, and Detroit. At the last meeting in Detroit, final plans laid the foundation for a permanent organization constituting a nationwide federation of societies. The next convention took place in Philadelphia, July 4, 1947, where the federation came into being with the adoption of bylaws was adopted, the election of officers, and the name “Astronomical League” was selected. Shortly thereafter, the organization was incorporated as a non-profit organization.
In 2003, The Astronomical League achieved the long-sought goal of a permanent, National Office, which provides a central location for all of their general operations. At the same time, the first employee, an office manager was hired at this National Office, which is located at 9201 Ward Parkway, Suite 100, Kansas City, MO 64114.
The Astronomical League can be found at their website at https://www.astroleague.org. The astronomy clubs that are members of the league can be found here for Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. They do host yearly conventions around the US and have yearly observing awards that one can win.
There is also a league called the International Astronomical Union, which we discussed here. The IAU is. an international association of professional astronomers, at the PhD level and beyond, active in professional research and education in astronomy. Their website is https://www.iau.org.