By Katie Fehlinger

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Franklin Institute embraced the once-in-a-lifetime celestial spectacle by hosting the Great American Solar Eclipse viewing experience during the entire duration of the eclipse Monday afternoon.

Millions of Americans were eyewitnesses to the moon moving in between the Earth and the sun to create a total solar eclipse in some areas throughout the United States but a partial solar eclipse in Philadelphia and surrounding areas.

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PHOTOS: Eclipse 2017 Throughout The United States

In the Philadelphia region, observers saw about 79.9 percent of the sun covered by the moon.

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According to NASA, only 14 states were in the path of totality and able to experience a total solar eclipse.

The path of the total solar eclipse started in Oregon at 10:15 a.m. PT, ending in South Carolina at 2:36 p.m ET. The twelve states in between that experienced the eclipse in its totality were Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina.

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Total solar eclipses occur every 18 months but this is the first total solar eclipse to occur in the continental United States since 1979.