The Manhattan Project

Security & Secrecy

Philadelphia, PA

Philip Abelson conducted research on the liquid thermal diffusion method of isotope separation at the Philadelphia Navy Yard. This process was utilized for the S-50 Plant at Oak Ridge.

In September 1944, several workers were injured while trying to fix a clogged tube in the transfer room of the liquid thermal diffusion semi-works at the Philadelphia Navy Yard.

Walter Goodman's Interview

Walter Goodman: My name is Walter Goodman and I was born in 1922, which is a very long time ago. I was particularly interested in engineering and in the military from the time I was a young boy. When I did get into the service, I ended up continuing in school, and finished electrical engineering.

Jack Keen's Interview

Jack Keen: My father was an engineering draftsman at Hanford. I was—depending on what the months were—probably three or four years old.

Richard Rhodes: When you went there?

Keen: Right, when I lived there in one of those big, duplex houses. My mother, father and I lived in those duplexes for a time when I was a little kid.

Rhodes: What was his name?

Keen: His name was Lester Orlan, O-R-L-A-N, Keen, K-E-E-N.

Rhodes: And what was your mother’s name?

Ruth Kerr Jakoby's Interview

Ruth Kerr Jakoby: My name is Dr. Ruth Kerr Jakoby. J-A-K-O-B-Y. I was born September 2, 1929. I am eighty-five years old. On September 2, I will be eighty-six.

Alex Wellerstein: My birthday is September 5, so we can both be Virgos together. Where were you born?

Jakoby: Palo Alto, California.

Wellerstein: You said you have a doctorate? What is your field in?

Jakoby: Neurosurgery. 

Wellerstein: Oh, wow!

Robert Lamphere's Interview - Part 2

Robert Lamphere: They said that he [Klaus Fuchs] annoyed some of the people because he wanted to keep certain [inaudible]. That’s a little point of irony. 

Richard Rhodes: Although, again, there was one guy who later thought, “Well, maybe he was pushing to find out what was the most valuable information.” Which I hadn’t thought of until I saw that comment.

Lamphere: I did not remember that at all. Don’t remember covering it in my interview.

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