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Table of Contents

Biography

AbstractImportant DatesOccupationPlacesSubjects

Relationships

PeopleInstitutions

Resources

Archival as AuthorArchival as SubjectPublished as Subject

William David Coolidge

Photo

Dates

October 23, 1873 – Feburary 3, 1975

Authorized Form of Name

Coolidge, William David, 1873-1975

Additional Forms of Names

Coolidge, W. D. (William David), 1873-1975

Biography

Abstract

William David Coolidge is well known for his contributions to X-ray machines and his work with tungsten filaments. He was the director of the General Electric Research Laboratory (1932-1940) and a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

Important Dates

October 23, 1873Birth, Boston (Mass.).

1896Obtained BS in Electrical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge (Mass.).

1897 – 1905Assistant in Physics (1897); Instructor in Physical Chemistry (1901-1903); and Assistant Professor of Physico-Chemical Research (1904-1905), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge (Mass.).

1899Obtained PhD in Physics, University of Leipzig, Leipzig (Germany).

1905 – 1975Physico-Chemist (1905-1907); Assistant Director, Research Laboratory (1908-1928); Associate Director, Research Laboratory (1928-1932); Director, Research Laboratory (1932-1940); Vice President and Director of Research (1940-1944); Consultant on X-Rays (1945-1961); and Emeritus Director, Research and Development Center (1961-1975), General Electric Company, Schenectady (N.Y.).

1925Member, National Academy of Sciences.

1930 – 1935Term Member, MIT Corporation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

1935 – 1949Member, Visiting Committee, National Bureau of Standards.

1941Member, Advisory Committee on Uranium Research, National Academy of Sciences.

Feburary 3, 1975Death, Schenectady (N.Y.).

Occupation

Applied physicist.

Places

Birth

Boston (Mass.)

Undergraduate Education

Cambridge (Mass.)

Graduate Education

Leipzig (Germany)

Employment

Cambridge (Mass.)

Schenectady (N.Y.)

Death

Schenectady (N.Y.)

Subjects

Applied physics and engineering.

Physics -- Industrial applications.

Tungsten.

X-rays.

Relationships

People

Family

Coolidge, Albert Edward

Father.

Coolidge, Dorothy Elizabeth

Second wife.

Coolidge, Elizabeth

Daughter.

Coolidge, Ethel Woodward

Wife. Married in 1908.

Coolidge, Lawrence

Son.

Coolidge, Martha Alice

Mother.

Colleagues

Apker, LeRoy Woodard

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Bain, Edgar Collins, 1891-1971

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Batzel, Roger Elwood

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Bean, Charles P., 1923-1996

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Brooks, Harvey

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Bush, Vannevar, 1890-1974

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Cahn, John W., 1928-

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Duke, Charles B.

Both employed at General Electric Company.

DuMond, Jesse W. M. (Jesse William Monroe), 1892-1976

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Edelheit, Lewis

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Edgerton, Harold Eugene, 1903-1990

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Ehrlich, Gert

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Giaever, Ivar

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Hull, Albert Wallace, 1880-1966

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Jewett, Frank B. (Frank Baldwin), 1879-1949

Both employed at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Langmuir, Irving, 1881-1957

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Mahan, Gerald D.

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Perl, Martin L., 1927-2014

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Price, Paul Buford

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Schmitt, Roland W.

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Seitz, Frederick, 1911-2008

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Slichter, Louis B. (Louis Byrne), 1896-1978

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Suits, C. Guy (Chauncey Guy), 1905-1991

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Tolman, Richard C. (Richard Chace), 1881-1948

Both employed at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Watkins, George D.

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Webb, M. B. (Maurice Barnett), 1926-

Both employed at General Electric Company.

Additional

Curie, Marie, 1867-1934

James, Hubert Maxwell, 1908-

Kerst, Donald William, 1911-1993

Lenard, Philipp, 1862-1947

Leverenz, Humboldt W.

Mott-Smith, Harold Meade, 1897-

Röntgen, Wilhelm Conrad, 1845-1923

Shankland, Robert S., 1908-

Thomson, Elihu, 1853-1937

Institutions

Major Positions

General Electric Company. Research and Development Center

Emeritus Director.

General Electric Company. Research Laboratory

Physico-Chemist; Assistant Director; Associate Director; Director; Vice President and Director of Research; Consultant on X-Rays; and Emeritus Director.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Chemistry

Instructor in Physical Chemistry and Assistant Professor of Physico-Chemical Research.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Physics

Assistant in Physics.

Professional Activities & Affiliations

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Corporation

Term Member.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Electrical Engineering

Obtained BS in 1896.

National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)

Member, Advisory Committee on Uranium Research.

United States. National Bureau of Standards

Member, Visiting Committee.

Universität Leipzig (1409-1953)

Obtained PhD (Physics) in 1899.

Resources

Archival Resources

Author

Lectures by William Coolidge, L. E. Etter, and Niels Bohr [sound recording], 1938.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

William D. Coolidge autobiographical notes, circa 1962.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

William David Coolidge papers, 1926-1954 (bulk 1940-1954).

Manuscript Division

Library of Congress

James Madison Memorial Building, First Street and Independence Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20540, USA

Subject

Albert W. Hull papers, 1920-1964.

Schenectady Museum

Nott Terrace Heights, Schenectady, NY 12308, USA

Donald W. Kerst papers, 1937-1959.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

Elihu Thomson papers, 1853-1955.

Library

American Philosophical Society

105 South Fifth Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106, USA

Oral history interview with H. M. Mott-Smith, 1977 March 1 and 2.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Hubert Maxwell James, 1981 July 15.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Humboldt Walter Leverenz, 1979 July 10.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Reminiscences of Albert Wallace Hull, 1951.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Transcripts of tributes to Elihu Thomson presented at the American Philosophical Society and the Franklin Institute by former associates, 1939.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Department of Physics Betatron Project correspondence, 1938-1970.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

Published Resources

Subject

William David Coolidge Physics Today obituary.

William David Coolidge: 1873-1975, Biographical Memoirs of the National Academy of Sciences

Yankee Scientist: William David Coolidge