AIP History Center Newsletter
Volume XXXVII , No. 2, Fall 2005

 

Rich Array of Donations to Niels Bohr Library in 2005

Books

A number of academic and corporate libraries are consolidating and, in the process, weeding out duplicates or older texts. In response to a listserv announcement asking librarians to send us their "dirty old books," the Niels Bohr Library received many generous gift donations this year. Goucher College Library gave us a large number of books as a result of their weeding project, from which we were able to add many into our collection including volume 18 of the Handbuch der Physik edited by S. Flügge; our collection of these important prewar Handbucher, which physicists usually acquired only as a particular volume caught their eye, is now nearly complete We have also received significant donations from Geoffrey Eichholz, Raymond Murray and Martin Klein. Stephen Brush made a large contribution to the Niels Bohr library from his private collection as well.

The Emilio Segrè Visual Archives

Our collectionwhose online selection of 7,000 continues to grow and is now available in an improved formatreceived donations of photographs from Lawrence W. Jones, Eugenio Carrara, R. Ronald Rau, Susan Kilbride, François Englert, Franco Selleri, Warren Washington, John T. Jefferies, David Smith, Sooyoung Chang, Richard Beards, and Richard I. Brown. We would also like to thank the many people who donated photographs to us through the Physics Today obituary office. The response to our emailed inquiries to them has been resoundingly positive.

Member Society Presidents William Yost, Susan Muller, Richard Peterson, John Orcutt, Howard Amols, the late John Bahcall, David Aspnes, and Eric W. Van Stryland helped keep our Member Society Presidents Gallery current by donating portraits. We also received portraits of this year's Nobel Laureates, David J. Gross, H. David Politzer, and Frank Wilczek. All new photos are being scanned and mounted on the Web, but we are now taking steps to make sure that signatures are obscured because of the rising threat of identity theft.

Manuscript Materials

The Niels Bohr Library received a variety of donations this year, continuing our tradition of preserving and promoting the history of physics and related sciences. George Rideout submitted the annual addition of the Gravity Research Foundation's Essay Contest entries for 2005 (0.5 linear feet). In addition to this yearly donation to the archive, William P. Elliot added his unique Papers on Carbon Dioxide and Climate Change, 1977-1991 (1.0 linear feet) and Robert H. Romer donated the lecture notes of Robert B. Whitney (278 pages), taken during a course on quantum mechanics taught by J.H. Van Vleck. And Cabell Pearse contributed his notes on the lecture "Chemical thermodynamics," delivered in 1950 at Caltech (0.25 linear feet) by John Gamble Kirkwood (1907-1959), professor of Chemistry at Cornell and Yale. Robert D. Hill donated a copy of the essay "Theoretical views on the new particles," co-authored by Murray Gell-Mann and Abraham Pais (23 pages), presented at the International Physics Conference at Glasgow in 1954 and printed in the Conference Proceedings.

Every year some of AIP's Member Societies update the archives with documentation of their activities past and recent. The American Association of Physics Teachers added two collections: the Records of the AAPT from 1940-1986 (4.0 linear feet) and the History of the Piaget Workshops from 1973-1976 (0.5 linear feet, donated by Warren Hein and AAPT). Janis Bennet donated the records of the Society of Rheology's Bingham Award nominations for 1991-1997 (1.0 linear feet). The Bingham Award is granted by the Society for outstanding contributions in the field of rheology. The American Astronomical Society was also an especially active donor this year: James Hilton, from their Division on Dynamical Astronomy contributed an Addition to Records for the years 1970-2005 (8 file folders), and A.G. Davis Philip, former Director of Educational Activities, made a large contribution of the files of the Harlow Shapley Visiting Lectureship Program from 1980-1999 (9.0 linear feet). Finally, Ronald E. Mickens of the American Physical Society, Southeastern Section donated his records to the archives (2000-2004, 1.0 linear feet).

Miscellaneous, Manuscript Biographies and Institutional Histories

The Niels Bohr Library expanded its collection of institutional histories with the addition of two small collections this year. Anita Hollier of the CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) Archives sent us documentation of the founding of CERN in 1952, containing newspaper clippings and photocopies of original reports from the meeting outlining the plan for the founding of CERN. Authors of these reports include Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg (20 pages). Jay Maynard donated some recollections by Laymon N. Miller, taken from Miller's lecture at the 75th Anniversary Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America in New York City in 2004 (43 pages), titled, "Some anecdotes and recollections about Acoustical Society presidents whom I have known," including Leo L. Beranek, Richard H. Bolt, Charles Paul Boner, Frederick V. Hunt, Warren P. Mason, Paul Sabine, and John C. Steinberg.

We received several additions to our manuscript biography collection this year. One of these additions comes from Joan Bromberg, who donated a copy of her talk titled "Leonard Mandel and experimental tests of quantum mechanics: a talk for the APS Forum on the History of Physics, 16 April 2005" (15 pages) discussing Mandel's quantum mechanics experiment paper (1991), as well as his earlier work from the 1960s. Ron Doel also increased this collection with his donation of the autobiography of Eric B. Kraus, written in 2003 (10 pages). Further, Kenneth W. Ford sent files documenting the research and recollections of George E. Pugh (23 pages). Topics include personal recollections and various materials on what became the Gravity Probe-B satellite program at Stanford University. Also from Ken Ford came one file folder of Pugh's recollections of Hugh Everett III. Meanwhile the archive added a resource from the Internet, Eugene Shikhovtsev's biographical sketch of Hugh Everett III (23 pages). Such scholarly postings on the Internet are of uncertain durability and we would appreciate hearing of any that we might print out on paper to assure permanent preservation in our archives.

Oral History Interviews

Since our last report, two interviewers sent their interviews to us in the fall of 2004. The first was an interview with Marshall Rosenbluth by Kai-Henrik Barth, and Owen Gingerich conducted two different interviews of the late Philip J. Morrison as part of the project to have him fully interviewed by different people on aspects of his career.

More oral history interviews were acquired in 2005 as part of the Physicist in Industry Project. those interviewed were: Nicholas Holonyak interviewed by Babak Ashrafi, and Herbert Fusfeld and Donald Keck, interviewed by Tom Lassman. In addition, Babak Ashrafi conducted oral history interviews with Charles Slichter, Anthony Leggett, and David Pines.

This past year David DeVorkin of the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum interviewed W. M. Baum, Thomas C. Van Flandern and Victor Slabinski and Steve Maran with the AIP Center's cooperation. Other interviews received this year were: Mordechai Vanunu conducted by Alexei Kojevnikov, John P. Huchra by Patrick McCray, Michael Gruntman by David Stern, and John T. Jefferies, conducted years ago by Spencer Weart and edited by Jefferies now that he is retired.

We also received two DVD's of a conversation between Benjamin Bederson, Edward Gerjuoy, Sidney Borowitz and Larry Spruch and an interview with Harold J. Morowitz conducted by Yi Doogab; none of these are planned to be transcribed.
For full information on all our archival materials visit the International Catalog of Sources search page at www.aip.org/history/icos. Note that you can use a dropdown menu at the bottom of the page to restrict your search to particular types of materials in the Niels Bohr Library and not at other repositories. For our books, click the "Books" tab. Here too you can limit your search using dropdown menus. For example, Publication date: 193? and Subject: Astronomy will give a list of the 28 astronomy titles in the Library published in the 1930s.


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