The English amateur astronomer John Franklin-Adams (1843–1912) created an early photographic atlas of the sky, based on plates taken at Johannesburg, South Africa, and Godalming, England. It was published posthumously in 1913–1914 and contains 206 charts covering the whole sky, each 15° square, and showing stars as faint as 17th magnitude.

Philibert Jacques Melotte scanned the Franklin-Adams chart plates for star clusters and published his catalogue of 245 objects in the year 1915[1][2]. Since then, this list is referred to as the Melotte Catalogue of Star Clusters.

The Melotte catalogue contains both open clusters and globular clusters and is attractive for amateur astronomers when they go beyond the well-known Messier and Caldwell catalogues because Melotte objects are still within the range of modest equipment and broaden the view of the variety of objects that there are significantly. A good overview can be found in Dead link: Melotte_Cat.pdfMelotte_Cat.pdf by PJ Anway of the private Lookum Observatory of Munising, Michigan, USA.

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  1. A Catalogue of Star Clusters shown on the Franklin-Adams Chart Plates by P.J. Melotte - 1915, Royal Astronomical Society Dead link: Melotte Scan.pdf) provided by the Royal Astronomical Society archives with help from PJ Anway of the private Lookum Observatory of Munising, Michigan, USA
  2. Obituary Notices, Quarterly Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 3, p.48 ([1])