The HII region Sh 2-261 is often called Lower's nebula because it appears on a photographic plate
taken by the father-and-son team of Harold and Charles Lower in 1939.
The Lowers were amateur astronomers, accomplished telescope makers and pioneering astrophotographers from San Diego, California. Harold Lower published a pamphlet in 1939 describing an 8 inch Schmidt camera that he and his son had constructed several years previously. He notes that the camera has been especially useful in photographing what are now called HII regions:
Another field which we have found interesting is searching for diffuse galactic nebulae which photograph strongly by red light. By the use of red-sensitive film and a deep red filter we have been able to photograph a number of nebulae which are exceedingly faint on blue-sensitive negatives. 
Appears to be associated with the O7.5V star HD 41997.[2
HD 41997 is a runaway star.[3
BFS incorrectly lists Sh 2-261 as a supernova remnant. [4
There are several distance estimates available for Sh 2-261 / HD 41997. If the further distances are correct, Sh 2-261 is likely part of the Gemini molecular clouds in the Perseus arm. If the closer 1000 pc distance is correct, then it appears to be part of the Orion spur.
1. ^ Lower, H. A. (1939). "The Schmidt Camera", Leaflet of the Astronomical
Society of the Pacific, Vol. 3, 207. [1939ASPL....3..207L]
2. ^ Sharpless, Stewart (1959). "A Catalogue of H II Regions.", The
Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, Vol. 4, 257.
3. ^ Moffat, A. F. J., Marchenko, S. V., Seggewiss, W., et al. (1998).
"Wolf-Rayet stars and O-star runaways with HIPPARCOS. I. Kinematics",
Astronomy and Astrophysics, Vol. 331, 949-958. [1998A&A...331..949M]
4. ^ Blitz, L., Fich, M., & Stark, A. A. (1982). "Catalog of CO radial
velocities toward galactic H II regions", The Astrophysical Journal
Supplement Series, Vol. 49, 183-206. [1982ApJS...49..183B]