Oral history interview with Robert Marshak, 1970.


Oral history interview with Robert Marshak, 1970.

Childhood and early education in New York, undergraduate education in philosophy at Columbia College, 1932-1936; years of graduate study in physics at Columbia University, 1936-1937; influence of Isidor I. Rabi, the joint NYU-Columbia seminar in physics; transfer to Cornell University for graduate work in nuclear physics, 1937-1939; influence of Hans Bethe; thesis work on white dwarfs; first teaching position at University of Rochester, joint work with Victor Weisskopf in nuclear physics and particles; remarks on war years, astrophysics, cyclotrons, and other matters; Shelter Island Conferences. Formation of the Federation of American Scientists (F.A.S.) in 1946; Marshak succeeds Robert Wilson as Chairman, 1947. World Federation of Scientific workers, chaired by Frédéric Joliot-Curie, wants to enroll F.A.S. (1947, in Paris meeting). Marshak's work on two-meson theory. F.A.S. issues in the 1950s; the Emergency Committee and F.A.S.; Einstein's interests and views on relation of science to society; comments on J. Robert Oppenheimer; chairmanship at University of Rochester; Lee DuBridge; long-range plan and extensive development of physics department funded through AEC contracts; training of students from abroad such as Okubo, Sudarshan, Messiah, Regge. Last half of interview covers the Rochester conferences. Scientific work during the 1950s, the V-A interaction (George Sudarshan) theory (a.k.a. Feynman-Gell-Mann theory of weak interactions); books and works with graduate students. Travels to Europe and India (Tata Institute), 1953. Accepts City College (CUNY) presidency; reasons for leaving University of Rochester. Also prominently mentioned are: Robert Fox Bacher, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, George Braxton Pegram, Julian R. Schwinger, Edward Teller; Lawrence Radiation Laboratory, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology Radiation Laboratory.

Audiotape: 5 5-inch reels (16.0 hrs.)Transcript: 257 pp. (4 sessions)


SNAC Resource ID: 8265136

Related Entities

There are 29 Entities related to this resource.

Feynman, Richard P. (Richard Phillips), 1918-1988

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6mx38zq (person)

Physicist Richard Feynman won his scientific renown through the development of quantum electrodynamics, or QED, a theory describing the interaction of particles and atoms in radiation fields. As a part of this work he invented what came to be known as "Feynman Diagrams," visual representations of space-time particle interactions. For this work he was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics, together with J. Schwinger and S. I. Tomonaga, in 1965. Later in his life Feynman became a prominent public fig...

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6sv8d0k (corporateBody)

The Department of General Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) did not officially exist until 1882. Courses in general studies were offered as early as 1865, when the MIT Catalog offered a curriculum option called the Course in Science and Literature. At that time, all regular MIT students were required to take “general studies” classes from the Course in Science and Literature, in addition to English, history, and modern languages. In 1882 the Course in Scienc...

Columbia University

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6r0313j (corporateBody)

The Columbia University community and administration mobilized to the fullest extent in answer to the entry of the United States into World War I. Summed up by President Nicholas Murray Butler in the 1918 Annual Report, the effects of the war on the University were far-reaching: "Students by the hundred and prospective students by the thousand entered the military, naval, or civil service of the United States; teachers and administrative officers to the number of nearly four hundred...

Federation of American Scientists

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6963z1v (corporateBody)

The Federation of American Scientists, a federation of seven associations of scientists and engineers, was organized in 1946 for the purpose of promoting world peace, international control of atomic energy, and the proper use of science for general welfare. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., FAS sought to influence government policy and educate the public concerning the social implications of new knowledge in science. From the description of Records, 1945-1970 (inclusive). (Universit...

Gell-Mann, Murray

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6ht2qqm (person)

Born 1929. From the description of Oral history interview with Murray Gell-Mann, 1982 July 23. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 78732383 Biography Murray Gell-Mann was born on September 15, 1929, in New York City, the second son of Arthur Isidore Gell-Mann and Pauline, née Reichstein. The hyphenation of the family surname was introduced by Arthur from the traditional Gellmann used by his forebears in the place of his birth,...

U.S. Atomic Energy Commission

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6cv85zh (corporateBody)

This collection of transparencies was used by representatives of the Atomic Energy Commission (A.E.C.) during a presentation before the Alaska House State Affairs Committee, April 4, 1970, in Juneau. At the time of the presentation, the A.E.C. was planning a second underground nuclear test on Amchitka Island in 1971, code-named CANNIKIN. Testimony was heard from several groups against a second test as well as adverse testimony about the first test which took place in October, 1969 and was code n...

Teller, Edward, 1908-2003

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w62v2hcz (person)

15 January 1908 Born, Budapest, Hungary 1926 1928 Student, Karlsruhe Technical Institute, Karlsruhe, Germany 1928 Student, University of Munich, Germany 1929 1931 Research associate, University of Leipzig, Germany 1930 Ph.D., University of Leipzig 1931 1933 Research associate, Guttingen, Germany 1934 Married Augusta (Mici) Harkanyi ...

Wilson, Robert R., 1914-2000

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6vh5q44 (person)

Robert Rathbun Wilson was born in 1914 in Frontier Wyoming, received an A.B. from the University of California, Berkeley, 1936, and after studying with Prof. Ernest O. Lawrence, a Ph. D. in 1940. He participated in an early effort led by Enrico Fermi at Columbia University to build a nuclear reactor as part of a joint effort with Princeton University, where he was a lecturer and assistant professor, 1940-1942. He worked for Princeton University's reactor project, 1941-19...

Oppenheimer, J. Robert, 1904-1967

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6v1266v (person)

Died 1967. From the description of Oral history interview with J. Robert Oppenheimer, 1963 November 18 and 20. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 80709804 Physicist (quantum theory and nuclear physics). On the physics faculty at California Institute of Technology and University of California, Berkeley in theoretical physics, 1929-1947; director of Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, 1943-1945; chairman of the General Advisory Committee of the Atomic Energy Commission, 1946-1952; d...

DuBridge, Lee A. (Lee Alvin), 1901-1994

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6445nx9 (person)

Lee DuBridge was President of the California Institute of Technology from 1946-1969. From the description of Space Research, 1958. (Jet Propulsion Laboratory Library and Archives). WorldCat record id: 733095203 DuBridge was President of Caltech. From the description of No Shakeup in JPL Management Due, 1964 Feb. (Jet Propulsion Laboratory Library and Archives). WorldCat record id: 733096493 From the description of Confirmation of Conditions for Relations...

Columbia College (Columbia University)

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w68w85mf (corporateBody)

Einstein, Albert, 1879-1955

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w63c6p77 (person)

Albert Einstein was born at Ulm, in Württemberg, Germany, on March 14, 1879. Six weeks later the family moved to Munich, where he later on began his schooling at the Luitpold Gymnasium. Later, they moved to Italy and Albert continued his education at Aarau, Switzerland and in 1896 he entered the Swiss Federal Polytechnic School in Zurich to be trained as a teacher in physics and mathematics. In 1901, the year he gained his diploma, he acquired Swiss citizenship and, as he was...

Schwinger, Julian, 1918-1994

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6vt1t96 (person)

Schwinger was born Feb. 12, 1918 in NYC; AB, Columbia, 1936; Ph. D, Columbia, 1939; received a National Research Council Fellowship and went to UC Berkeley to work with J. Robert Oppenheimer; contributed to the development of the atomic bomb as a staff member at the Metallurgical Laboratory, Univ. of Chicago, 1943; staff member, Radiation Laboratory, MIT, 1943-46; taught at Harvard Univ., 1945-72; taught at UCLA, 1972-88; awarded the Nobel Prize in physics in 1965 for his contributions in the fi...

Pegram, George Braxton, 1876-1958

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6x069kt (person)

Nuclear physicist, professor of physics, and Dean of Graduate Faculties at Columbia University. Pegram, a prominent nuclear physicist, conducted a great deal of defense-related research and was responsible for the famous meeting between Franklin Delano Roosevelt and American nuclear scientists prior to World War II that eventually led to the establishment of the Manhattan Project. From the description of Papers, 1903-1958. (Columbia University In the City of ...

Lawrence Radiation Laboratory

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6711wz1 (corporateBody)

International conference on high energy physics

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6c87c06 (corporateBody)

University of Rochester

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6ps1qkn (corporateBody)

Chandrasekhar, S. (Subrahmanyan), 1910-1995

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6df6sq7 (person)

Astrophysicist. B.A., Presidency College, Madras University, 1930. Ph. D., Cambridge University, 1933; Sc. D., 1942. Research Associate, Yerkes Observatory, University of Chicago, 1937. Assistant Professor, University of Chicago, 1938; Associate Professor, 1942; Professor, 1944; Distinguished Service Professor, 1946; Morton D. Hull Distinguished Service Professor of Theoretical Astrophysics, 1952. Managing editor, Astrophysical Journal, 1952-1971. Nobel Prize in Physics, 1983. From t...

Cornell University

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6hj08mc (corporateBody)

Shelter Island Conferences.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6p60qjz (corporateBody)

Weiner, Charles.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6f19158 (person)

Charles Irwin Weiner is an historian. From the guide to the Joseph Henry's lectures on natural philosophy: teaching and research in physics, 1832-1847, 1965, 1965, (American Philosophical Society) ...

Bacher, Robert F. (Robert Fox), 1905-2004

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w60r9rfr (person)

Robert R. Bacher (1905-). Physicist (high-energy physics, nuclear energy), California Institute of Technology. From the description of Papers, 1940-1987. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 81716582 Physicist. Cornell University, 1935. During World War II, worked in the radar program at the MIT Radiation Laboratory;Manhattan Project, Head of the Experimental Physics Division, 1943-1944, and head of the bomb physics division, 1944-1945;Member of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission f...

City university of New York

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6f527jd (corporateBody)

Marshak, Robert E. (Robert Eugene), 1916-1992

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w60z75vd (person)

American educator; president, City College, City University of New York, 1970-1979. From the description of Robert Eugene Marshak papers, 1970-1985. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 754872077 Physicist (sub-atomic particles) and educator. Died in 1992. From the description of Oral history interview with Robert Marshak, 1970. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 81515112 Physicist (sub-atomic particles) and educator. A. B., Columbia University (1936); Ph. D., Cor...

Weisskopf, Victor Frederick, 1908-2002

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6tm7cd2 (person)

Victor F. Weisskopf, Ph.D., University of Gottingen, Germany, 1931, was professor of Physics at MIT from 1946 until his retirement in 1974. He was director general of the European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland, from 1961 to 1965. Weisskopf's research focus was theoretical work in quantum electrodynamics and nuclear particle physics. Other major affiliations include: University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA, 1937-1943; Los Alamos, NM, USA, 1943-1947. Fro...

Joliot-Curie, Frédéric

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w66q31rb (person)

Rabi, I. I. (Isidor Isaac), 1898-1988

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6fq9zrz (person)

Physicist. From the description of Reminiscences of Isidor Isaac Rabi : oral history, 1985. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 309725915 From the description of Reminiscences of Isidor Isaac Rabi : oral history, 1962. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 309725931 From the description of Reminiscences of Isidor Isaac Rabi : oral history, 1980. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record...

Bethe, Hans A. (Hans Albrecht), 1906-2005

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6pn965q (person)

Physicist. From the description of Hans Albrecht Bethe oral histories, 1966-1981. (Cornell University Library). WorldCat record id: 63935483 Alsatian-born American physicist, winner of the 1967 Nobel Prize for physics. From the description of Typed letter signed : Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, to Samuel Goudsmit, 1936 June 6. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270953107 Unpublished document written as chapter 13 of the Smyth Report. Letters about it ...

New York University

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w616563x (corporateBody)

The Class Collection documents selected student and alumni activities of New York University graduating classes from 1843-1966. Formal and informal gatherings were common, and were documented in detail by the participants. From the description of Class collection, 1843-1966. 1880-1900 (bulk). (New York University). WorldCat record id: 477254465 New York University (formerly, University of the City of New York), is an academic institution and, as such, its faculty produces ar...