In taking a star sight, the greatest difficulty is in bringing the star down to the horizon. This is often very difficult, and sometimes impossible where the star is indistinct, or where the star has to be brought down through a bright sky. Under the above conditions, a person inexperienced with the sextant will find it impossible to take a sight, and often an expert with the sextant cannot succeed in getting the star down to the horizon.
This method consists in bringing the horizon up to the star. It was called to my attention by Captain J. S. McDonald, U. S. Navy, in 1910, and as I have since run across a great many officers who have never heard of it, including many navigators, I will describe the method briefly: