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RA: 18h 20m 58.8s
Dec: −63° 48′ 35″
Ch: MSA:1521, U2:455, SA:26
Ref: Corwin (2004), DAML02, Archinal&Hynes (2003)
Mag: B=?, V=?
Size: 4′ x 1.5′
NGC 6588 is probably one of the asterisms that I've listed in the position table. My guess is the line of three or four stars that I've marked with a colon. The southern most of these is the brightest, and is a merged double which might have looked nebulous on a night of less than perfect seeing. It is at JH's declination and is just 30 seconds preceding his RA. Otherwise, JH's description, "eF, S; among stars. A *6 m sp 10 arcmin distant," fits nicely. The star is SAO 254209.
However, there are two other asterisms that might be JH's object. I've listed them with question marks. I also checked for a large blunder in the position, but found none. In particular, the other objects in this sweep (No. 708 on 8 June 1836), are in the same declination range, and at much the same RA as well.
Discovered by Sir John Herschel at the Cape of Good Hope with an 18-inch f/13 speculum telescope. He recorded it as "eF, S, among stars. A star about 6m S.p. 10' distant."
Table IV: Not seen, sev vF *, no neb.
The RNGC (Sulentic and Tifft 1973) notes that this is a nonexistent object. Their coded description reads NF S.
The Messier objects
The Bennett objects
The Caldwell list
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