The Manhattan Project

University Involvement in the Manhattan Project

Gerhart Friedlander's Interview

Gerhart Friedlander: My name is Gerhart Friedlander.

Interviewer: What was your role in the Manhattan Project?

Friedlander: I got into the Manhattan Project very early; in fact, before there was an official Manhattan Project. I was a graduate student at Berkeley at the University of California. My thesis advisor was Glenn Seaborg, who later on got a Nobel Prize and became chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, but at that time he was just a new instructor and I was his first graduate student. 

Clarence Larson's Interview

Stephane Groueff: Interview with Dr. Clarence Larson—L-A-R-S-O-N—head of the Union Carbide’s operations at Oak Ridge, a chemist. Dr. Larson was connected with the electromagnetic separation process during the war, and he was a personal friend of Dr. Lawrence [Ernest O. Lawrence]. He’s married to the daughter of Dr. Stafford Warren, who was also with the project. You came in 1942?

Dr. Clarence Larson: Yes.

Groueff: From where?

General Kenneth Nichols's Interview - Part 3

General Kenneth Nichols: —found we did not have the authority to satisfy DuPont.

Stephane Groueff: But why did DuPont challenge your authority?

Nichols: Because they had trouble, in World War I, being called munitions makers and investigated after World War I, so they are more conservative than most companies. And they wanted to have in their files copies of our authorities. And what we had, which I have shown you, and that is satisfactory to them.

Groueff: I see.

Sir Rudolf Peierls's Interview

Martin Sherwin: This is Martin Sherwin. I'll be interviewing Sir Rudolf Peierls at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Today's date is June 6th, 1979. 

You first met [J.Robert] Oppenheimer in Zurich in 1929?

Rudolf Peierls: Right, yes.

Sherwin: At that time, I think you mentioned you were working with [Wolfgang] Pauli's group?

Peierls: Yeah.

Sherwin: Who else was there in that group?

Jerome Karle's Interview

Jerome Karle: My name is Jerome Karle. And it is J-E-R-O-M-E K-A-R-L-E.

Cindy Kelly: Great. Dr. Karle, can you tell me about what you were doing in the early 1940s and how you happened to become part of the Manhattan Project?

Karle: Well, I had just finished my work in 1943, for my graduation on my degree.

Isabella Karle: Your PhD.

Robert Christy's Interview

Martin Sherwin: This is Martin Sherwin. I am on my way to interview Professor Robert Christy in his office at 423 Downs on the Caltech Campus in Pasadena, California, March 30th, 1983.

You were a student of his?

Robert Christy: I was a graduate student of [J. Robert] Oppenheimer’s from the fall of 1937 until the spring of 1941 when I got my degree, my PhD degree in theoretical physics in Berkeley.

Sherwin: What did you do your dissertation on?

Lee DuBridge's Interview - Part 1

Martin Sherwin: Today is March 30, 1983. I am at the CalTech campus and I am going to interview President Emeritus Lee DuBridge at his home in Pasadena.

Lee DuBridge: But we were on many things together and so we saw a good deal of each other. I visited him [J. Robert Oppenheimer] at his home in Princeton a number of times. We had meetings there and we would drop in for social visits and so on.

Sherwin: I would like to sort of try to bore in on some of the points.

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