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About this Exhibit [back to top] Toughest damn atom I ever saw! (cartoon)

Text Peter Westwick
Exhibit Editors Spencer Weart,
Alexei Kojevnikov
W. Patrick McCray
Photos Jack Scott,
Heather Lindsay
Design Kyle Cassidy
Animation Jens Knappe





We thank Robert Crease, Barton Hacker, Martin Sherwin, Robert Seidel, and Catherine Westfall for reviewing the exhibit text.

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Suggested Readings [back to top]

Further Information on Ernest Lawrence's Life and Times

Lawrence's personal papers are archived at the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley. A list of Lawrence's scientific publications follows the memorial essay written by Luis Alvarez published in the National Academy of Science's Biographical Memoirs, 41 (1970), 251-294. Some recommended readings include:

  • Bernstein, Barton J. "Four physicists and the bomb: The early years." Historical Studies in the Physical and Biological Sciences, 18:2 (1988), 231-263.
  • Childs, Herbert. An American Genius: The Life of Ernest Orlando Lawrence. New York, 1968.
  • Davis, Nuel Pharr. Lawrence and Oppenheimer. New York, 1968.
  • Heilbron, J.L. and Robert W. Seidel. Lawrence and his Laboratory: A History of the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. vol. 1. Berkeley, 1989.
  • Herken, Gregg. "The University of California, the federal weapons labs, and the founding of the atomic West." In Bruce Hevly and John M. Findlay, eds., The Atomic West. Seattle, 1998. p.119-135.
  • Herken, Gregg. Brotherhood of the Bomb: The Tangled Lives and Loyalties of Robert Oppenheimer, Ernest Lawrence, and Edward Teller. New York: 2002.
  • Hewlett, Richard G. and Oscar E. Anderson, Jr. A History of the United States Atomic Energy Commission, vol. 1. The New World, 1939-1946. University Park, PA, 1962.
  • Hewlett, Richard G. and Francis Duncan. A History of the United States Atomic Energy Commission, vol. 2. Atomic Shield, 1947-1952. University Park, PA, 1969.
  • Hewlett, Richard G. and Jack M. Holl. Atoms for Peace and War, 1953-1961:Eisenhower and the Atomic Energy Commission. Berkeley, 1989.
  • Kevles, Daniel J. The Physicists: The History of a Scientific Community in Modern America. Cambridge, Mass., 1987.
  • Livingston, M. Stanley. Particle Accelerators: A Brief History. Cambridge, 1969.
  • Rhodes, Richard. The Making of the Atomic Bomb. New York, 1986.
  • Rhodes, Richard. Dark Sun: The Making of the Hydrogen Bomb. New York, 1995.
  • Seidel, Robert W. "Accelerating science: The postwar transformation of the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory." Historical Studies in the Physical Sciences, 13:2 (1983), 375-400.
  • Seidel, Robert W. "The origins of the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory." In Peter Galison and Bruce Hevly, eds. Big Science: The Growth of Large-Scale Research. Stanford, 1992. p. 21-45.
  • Süsskind, Charles. "Ernest Orlando Lawrence." In C.C. Gillispie, ed., Dictionary of Scientific Biography, vol. 8. New York, 1973.
  • Westwick, Peter J. "Abraded from several corners: Medical physics and biophysics at Berkeley." Historical Studies in the Physical and Biological Sciences, 27:1 (1996), 131-162.
  • Westwick, Peter J. The National Labs: Science in an American System, 1947-1974. Cambridge, 2002


youth and early career
youth and
early career

first cyclotron
the first

big cyclotrons
Rad Lab

big science

the bomb

cold war science
cold war

the cold war
cold war

more info

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