Bridgman, P.W. (Percy Williams), 1882-1961

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Percy Williams Bridgman (1882-1961), was a physicist.  His contributions to the field concern the effects of high pressures on materials and their thermodynamic behavior, contributions that would not have been possible without the equipment, particularly a seal, that he invented himself.  He also contributed to crystallography, electrical conduction in metals, and the philosophy of modern physics.  He was a Nobel laureate in physics (1946) and recipient of many other honors.  He earned his Harvard AB 1904, Harvard AM 1905, and Ph.D. 1908.  He joined the Harvard Faculty in 1908, was appointed Instructor (1910) and Assistant Professor (1919), before becoming Hollis Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in 1926.  He was appointed Higgins University Professor in 1950.  Bridgman published more than 260 papers and 13 books.  He took his own life in 1961, rather than dying of the cancer with which he had been diagnosed.

From the guide to the Papers of Percy Williams Bridgman, (inclusive), 1905-1982, (Harvard University Archives)

Physicist (high pressures, metallic conduction). On the physics faculty at Harvard University from 1904; consultant, United States Army, 1942-1945; president American Physical Society, 1942; Nobel Prize for physics, 1946.

From the description of Crank theories collection, 1925-1961. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79973558

Percy Williams Bridgman (1882-1961), was a physicist. His contributions to the field concern the effects of high pressures on materials and their thermodynamic behavior, contributions which would not have been possible without the equipment, particularly a seal, that he invented himself. He also contributed to crystallography, electrical conduction in metals, and the philosophy of modern physics. He was a Nobel laureate in physics (1946) and recipient of many other honors. He earned his Harvard AB 1904, Harvard AM 1905, and Ph.D. 1908. He joined the Harvard Faculty in 1908, was appointed Instructor (1910) and Assistant Professor (1919), before becoming Hollis Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in 1926. He was appointed Higgins University Professor in 1950. Bridgman published more than 260 papers and 13 books. He took his own life in 1961, rather than dying of the cancer with which he had been diagnosed.

From the description of Papers of Percy Williams Bridgman, 1905-1982 (inclusive). (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 76972984

The Unity of Science Movement was a philosophic program that developed from the positions of the "Vienna Circle" philosophers of the late 1920s. The movement's founder and chief promoter was the sociologist Otto Neurath; and Charles W. Morris of the University of Chicago and Rudolph Carnap were also very active in the group's administration. Phillip Frank, Hans Reichenbach, Louis Roughier, Joergen Joergensen, Herbert Feigl, Carl Hempel and Victor F. Lenzen also contributed to the literature of unified science, whose advocates sought a common empirical attitude towards all the sciences and strove to develop a single, comprehensive scientific language. The participants in the movement believed a unified philosophical and methodological foundation for the sciences could be constructed by these means, and by the careful excision from science of "metaphysical," i.e., nonempirical concepts.

Along with their philosophic program, the members of the movement undertook the publication of the International Encyclopedia of Unified Science. Otto Neurath began organizing this project in 1935 during the first of many International Congresses for the Unity of Science. Throughout the 1930s there was an outpouring of unified science literature from sources including the journal Erkenntnis (edited by Rudolph Carnap and Hans Reichenbach), the publication series Einheitswissenschaft, and the American journals Philosophy of Science and the Journal of Symbolic Logic. Though the initial interest in the movement among philosophers was strong, activity in the Unity of Science Movement was severely restricted by the outbreak of the Second World War. Only the first two of the planned 200 volumes of the Encyclopedia were ever published. The congresses were stopped in 1941, the last having been held at the University of Chicago. Neurath relocated in England during the war and died there in 1945. Many of the other European members of the movement immigrated to the United States and contributed to the development of American scientific philosophy in the 1950s and 1960s.

From the guide to the Unity of Science Movement. Records, 1934-1968, (Special Collections Research Center University of Chicago Library 1100 East 57th Street Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Buckingham, Edgar, 1867-1940. Papers, 1891-1938. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Bentley, Arthur Fisher, 1870-1957. Papers, 1891-1968. Indiana University
referencedIn Michael S. Mahoney papers., 1923-2008 University of Minnesota Libraries. Charles Babbage Institute. [cbi]
referencedIn Unity of science movement records, 1934-1968. University of Chicago Library
referencedIn Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mid-Century Convocation on the Social Implications of Scientific Progress records, 1949, 1999 Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Institute Archives and Special Collections
referencedIn Lindsay, Robert Bruce, 1900-. Oral history interview with Robert Bruce Lindsay. 1964 May 6 and July 9. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Sharp, Robert P. (Robert Phillip). Oral history interview with Robert Phillip Sharp, 1990 April 25. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Correspondence, 1860-1979. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Clapp, Roger Edge, 1919-1990. Papers, 1942-1991. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Pauling, Linus, 1901-1994. Oral history interview with Linus Carl Pauling, 1964 March 27. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Hunt, Frederick V. Oral history interview with Frederick Vinton Hunt, 1964 December 18. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Kasimir Fajans Papers, 1912-1987, 1936-1975 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf Bridgman, P. W. (Percy Williams), 1882-1961. Crank theories collection, 1925-1961. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn McFarlan, Ronald Lyman. Oral history interview with Ronald Lyman McFarlan, 1979 December 18. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Oppenheimer, J. Robert, 1904-1967. Oral history interview with J. Robert Oppenheimer, 1963 November 18 and 20. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Unity of Science Movement. Records, 1934-1968 Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library,
referencedIn Slater, John C. (John Clarke), 1900-1976. Oral history interview with John Clarke Slater, 1963 October 3 and 8. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Manny, Frank Addison, 1868-1954. Frank Addison Manny papers, 1890-1955. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Bridgman, Perry Williams, 1882-. Letter, 1935 October 11, Cambridge, Mass., to Ingersoll Bowditch. Dartmouth College Library
referencedIn MacDonald, Gordon J. (Gordon James), 1929-2002. Oral history interview with Gordon J. MacDonald, 1993-1995. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Bridgman, P. W. (Percy Williams), 1882-1961. Letter, 1939, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
creatorOf Papers of Percy Williams Bridgman, (inclusive), 1905-1982 Harvard University Archives.
referencedIn Libby, Willard F. Oral history interview with Willard Frank Libby, 1979 April 12 and 16. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Bridgman, P. W. (Percy Williams), 1882-1961. Some of the broader implications of science [sound recording] / John Franklin Carlson Lecture at Iowa State University, 1957 May 1. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Bridgman, P. W. (Percy Williams), 1882-1961. Papers of Percy Williams Bridgman, 1905-1982 (inclusive). Harvard University, Archives
referencedIn Van Vleck, J. H. (John Hasbrouck), 1899-. Papers, 1853-1981, (1920-1980) American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Fajans, Kasimir, 1887-1975. Kasimir Fajans papers, 1912-1975. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Fajans, Kasimir, 1887-1975. Kasimir Fajans papers, 1912-1987. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Ava Helen and Linus Pauling Papers, 1910-1994 (bulk 1922-1991) Oregon State University The Valley Library, Special Collections
referencedIn Bohr, Niels, 1885-1962. Oral history interview with Niels Bohr, 1962 October 31 to 17 November. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Margenau, Henry, 1901-1997. Oral history interview with Henry Margenau, 1964 May 6. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Van Vleck, J. H. (John Hasbrouck), 1899-. The first ten years of John Slater's scientific career, ca. 1979. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Letters to John Torrence Tate, 1928. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Drickamer, H. G. (Harry George), 1918-2002. Response to History of Geophysics Survey, 1997. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn George Sarton additional papers, 1901-1956. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Frank, Philipp, 1884-1966. Oral history interview with Philipp Frank, 1962 July 16. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Darrow, Karl K. (Karl Kelchner), 1891-. Oral history interview with Karl K. Darrow, 1964 April 2 and 10 June. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Allen, Mildred, 1894-1990. Oral history interview with Mildred Allen, 1979 June 18. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Kemble, Edwin C. (Edwin Crawford), 1889-. Oral history interview with Edwin C. Kemble, 1962 May 11 to 1963 October 2 American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Frank Manny papers, 1890-1955 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Allen, Mildred, 1894-1990. person
associatedWith American Institute of Physics. corporateBody
associatedWith Bentley, Arthur Fisher, 1870-1957. person
associatedWith Bohr, Niels, 1885-1962. person
associatedWith Bowditch, Ingersoll. person
associatedWith Buckingham, Edgar, 1867-1940. person
associatedWith Byerly, William Elwood, b. 1849. person
associatedWith Carnap, Rudolf, 1891-1970 person
associatedWith Clapp, Roger Edge, 1919-1990. person
associatedWith Darrow, Karl K. (Karl Kelchner), 1891- person
associatedWith Dewey, John, 1859-1952 person
associatedWith Drickamer, H. G. (Harry George), 1918-2002. person
associatedWith Fajans, Kasimir, 1887-1975. person
associatedWith Feigl, Herbert person
associatedWith Frank, Philipp, 1884-1966. person
associatedWith Harvard University corporateBody
associatedWith Harvard University. Dept. of Physics corporateBody
correspondedWith Hocking, William Ernest, 1873-1966 person
associatedWith Hunt, Frederick V. person
associatedWith International Congress for the Unity of Science corporateBody
associatedWith International Encyclopedia of Unified Science corporateBody
associatedWith Joergensen, Joergen person
associatedWith Kemble, Edwin C. (Edwin Crawford), 1889- person
associatedWith Lenzen, Victor Fritz, 1890- person
associatedWith Libby, Willard F. person
associatedWith Lindsay, Robert Bruce, 1900- person
associatedWith Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory. corporateBody
associatedWith Lyman, Theodore, 1874-1954. person
associatedWith MacDonald, Gordon J. (Gordon James), 1929-2002. person
associatedWith Mahoney, Michael S. (Michael Sean) person
associatedWith Manny, Frank Addison, 1868-1954. person
associatedWith Margenau, Henry, 1901-1997. person
associatedWith McFarlan, Ronald Lyman. person
associatedWith Mid-Century Convocation on the Social Implications of Scientific Progress (1949 : Massachusetts Institute of Technology) corporateBody
associatedWith Morris, Charles W. (Charles William), 1903-1979 person
associatedWith Neurath, Otto, 1882-1945 person
associatedWith Oppenheimer, J. Robert, 1904-1967. person
associatedWith Pauling, Ava Helen person
associatedWith Pauling, Linus, 1901-1994. person
associatedWith Pauling, Linus Carl, 1901- person
associatedWith Peirce, B. O. (Benjamin Osgood), 1854-1914. person
associatedWith Pierce, George Washington, 1872-1956. person
associatedWith Reichenbach, Hans, 1891-1953 person
associatedWith Roughier, Louis person
associatedWith Russell, Bertrand, 1872-1970 person
correspondedWith Sarton, George, 1884-1956 person
associatedWith Sharp, Robert P. (Robert Phillip) person
associatedWith Skinner, B. F. (Burrhus Frederic), 1904-1990. person
associatedWith Slater, John C. (John Clarke), 1900-1976. person
associatedWith Van Vleck, J. H. (John Hasbrouck), 1899- person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Subject
Relativity (Physics)
Nuclear physics
Space and time
Physics--Philosophy
Relativity (Physics)--Research
Eccentrics and eccentricities
Matter
Mathematics--Societies, etc
Cosmology
Ether (Space)
Thermodynamics--Research
Magnetism
Quantum theory
Atomic theory
Electricity
Metallurgy
Occupation
Physicists
Function

Person

Birth 1882-04-21

Death 1961-08-20

Americans

French,

German,

English,

Spanish; Castilian,

Italian

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