Albert Einstein

An Albert Einstein Chronology

Click here for Einstein chronology for 1905

1879 (March 14) Born in Ulm, Germany, to Hermann Einstein (1847-1902) and Pauline Koch (1858-1920).
1880 Einsteins move to Munich.
1881 Sister Maja (Maria) born (d. 1951).
1888 Enters Luitpold school in Munich.
1894 Family moves to Italy, Albert stays at Luitpold.
1895 Rejoins family in Pavia, then goes to cantonal school in Aarau, Switzerland.
1896 Renounces German citizenship.
Gets diploma from Aarau, enrolls at ETH (Federal Institute of Technology) in Zurich.
1900 Gets diploma from ETH.
1901 Becomes Swiss citizen.
1902 Employed at patent office, Bern.
1903 Marries Mileva Maric (1875-1948). They have two sons, Hans Albert (1904-1973), who became a successful hydraulic engineer, and Eduard (1910-1965), who fell prey to incurable schizophrenia. A daughter (1902-?) was born before the marriage and apparently put up for adoption--her fate is unknown.
1905 Publishes in the Annalen der Physik:
-Über einen die Erzeugung und Verwandlung des Lichtes betreffenden heuristishen Gesichtspunkt, on the quantum of light and the photo-electric effect.
-Die von der molekularkinetischen Theorie der Wärme geforderte Bewegung von in ruhenden Flüssigkeiten suspendierten Teilchen, on Brownian motion of particles and atomic theory.
-Elektrodynamic bewegter Körper, the special theory of relativity.
-Ist die Trägheit eines Körpers von seinem Energieeinhalt abhängig?, equivalence of mass and energy.
1907 -Planckshe Theorie der Strahlung und die Theorie der spezifische Wärme, quantum theory for solids (specific heats).
-Relativitätsprinzip und die aus demselben gezogenen Folgerungen, the principle of general relativity--gravitation is equivalent to acceleration.
1909 Becomes associate professor at University of Zurich.
Further work on quantum theory.
1911 Becomes full professor at Karl-Ferdinand University in Prague.
Predicts bending of starlight at eclipses (but gets the magnitude wrong).
1912 Becomes professor at the ETH in Zurich.
1914 Becomes professor at University of Berlin.
Separates from Mileva and sons.
Outbreak of First World War.
1915 Cosigns "Manifesto to Europeans" separating himself from German militarism.
-Feldgleichungen der Gravitation, the general relativity equations.
1916 -Die Grundlage der allgemeinen Relativitätstheorie, book laying out the general theory of relativity.
Becomes president of the German Physical Society.
-Quantentheorie der Strahlung, derives momentum carried by light quanta; a 1917 paper with the same title explains stimulated emission.
1917 Becomes director of Kaiser-Wilhelm Institute (which supports research in Germany).
-Kosmologische Betrachtungen zur allgemeinen Relativitätstheorie, cosmology equations with the "cosmological term" and expanding universe.
1918 End of First World War; revolution in Germany.
1919 Divorced from Mileva. Marries his cousin Elsa Einstein Löwenthal (1876-1936). Her adult daughters by a previous marriage, Ilse (1897-1934) and Margot (1899-1986), had already legally taken the name Einstein.
Bending of light near sun observed at eclipse.
1920 Public attacks on relativity theory and Einstein by anti-Semites.
1921 First visit to United States.
1922 Works on unified field theory.
Visits Far East.
Awarded Nobel Prize in physics "for his services to theoretical physics and in particular for his discovery of the law of the photo-electric effect."
1924 Inauguration of Einstein Institute with "Einstein Tower" in Potsdam.
-Quantentheorie des einigatomigen idealen Gases, the "Bose-Einstein" quantum theory of statistical fluctuations.
1927 Begins dialogue on quantum theory interpretation with Niels Bohr at the fifth Solvay Congress.
1929-Einheitliche Feldtheorie, widely publicized attempt to unify gravitational and electromagnetic field theories.
1930 Extended visit to United States, chiefly at the California Institute of Technology.
1932 Appointed professor at Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, intending to divide time between there and Berlin.
1933 Nazis come to power in Germany; Einstein settles in United States.
1935 -Can quantum-mechanical description of physical reality be considered complete? (with B. Podolsky and N. Rosen), continuing the debate over interpretation.
1936 Death of Elsa.
1939 Outbreak of Second World War; Einstein signs letter to President Roosevelt warning of possibility of atomic bombs.
1940 Becomes citizen of United States (retaining Swiss citizenship).
1945 Atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki; end of Second World War.
1946 Serves as chairman of Emergency Committee of Atomic Scientists.
1948 -Generalized theory of gravitation, an example of continuing attempts to find a more universal mathematical approach to field theory.
1952 Offered presidency of Israel, and declines.
1955 (April 18) Dies in Princeton.


Exhibit Info
MAIN Exhibit Home Page

IN BRIEF Home Page