Messier Deep Sky Objects

Charles Messier created his list as an aid to avoid confusing deep space objects with comets. Since Messier was called the "comet ferret" and in his day was the champion comet finder, such a list was very important to him. However, in spite of our snide remarks, he must have known that his list wasn't just space junk because he included objects like the Pleiades which couldn't possibly be confused with a comet. We suspect he liked looking at these beautiful objects whenever he was looking for comets.

Messier was a careful observer, but occasionally made reporting errors and misplaced four objects. These errors were of the forms of math errors (inverted signs) or star hops from the wrong object. Three of these "lost" Messier objects have been recovered by subsequent scholarship. Only Messier 102 remains doubtful.

In 2020, the Frosty Drew Astronomy Team's imagers started a new project with the goal of re-imaging the entire Messier Catalog. We expect to complete this project in 2023, which will be subsequently followed by a publication, in print, of our work. As we continue to image and process the objects in the Messier catalog, we will be updating this page to showcase our work, and these objects in striking detail. Click through the catalog entries below, and enjoy the results of our team's skills.