Enrico Fermi Collection
 

The University of Chicago Library gratefully acknowledges the contribution of the University of Chicago Women's Board who provided financial support for the digitization of items from the Enrico Fermi Collection.

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Elementary particles
Original notebook housed in Box 46, Folder 8 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.

Summary: Notebook C9, "Elementary Particles, Spring 1951," University of Chicago, unbound, 21 x 28 cm, 80 pp, contains notes for a course on elementary particles that is similar to the 1950 Silliman Lectures at Yale (Box 46, Folder 3) and to Fermi's Elementary particles book.
    Notebook E3
Original notebook housed in Box 48, Folder 4 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.
Summary: Notebook E3, untitled, 1950-1954, University of Chicago, 10 x 17 cm, a loose-leaf notebook that contains alphabetized entries on various topics and data relating to the Chicago cyclotron and to the development of early high-speed counting devices. Entries include topics such as energy of activation, pions, and V-particles.
    Nuclear physics
Original notebook housed in Box 46, Folder 4 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.


Summary: Notebook C1, Winter 1949, contains notes for a course on nuclear physics, similar to the course published as Nuclear physics, a course given by Enrico Fermi at the University of Chicago (Box 46, Folder 5, and Box 52, Folder 9).
    Numerical calculations
Original notebook housed in Box 42, Folder 3 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.

Summary: Notebook D14, "Numerical Calculations," November 12, 1943, to May 27, 1944, no index, 20 x 27 cm, consists almost entirely of numerical calculations, without, it would seem, much theory. Some of the calculations for the years 1941-1942 can be related to exponential experiments. The quality and format of this notebook are the same as Notebook D13 (Box 42, Folder 5). It may be that D13 is a continuation of this notebook.
    Quantum mechanics
Original notebook housed in Box 48, Folder 2 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.

Summary: Notebook C6, "E. Fermi, Quantum Mechanics, 1939," University of Chicago, 19 x 24 cm, 115 pp, contains notes for a course on quantum mechanics, an early version of the course contained in Notebooks C4 and C5 (Box 46, Folders 3 and 5) (notebook C6 is in Box 48a).
    Cosmic Ray Theory
Excerpt from an original notebook housed in Box 43, Folder 4 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center
.
Summary: This is an excerpt from Notebook 104, May 26 1948-December 5 1948, and contains Fermi's notes on the theory of cosmic ray acceleration, 1948. The University of Chicago was a center for the study of atmospheric cosmic radiation following World War II. Today, Fermi acceleration is a basic tenet of cosmic ray physics.
    Nobel Prize Book
Original book housed in Box 4, Folder 17 (medal in Box 5, Folder 1-17) of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.
Summary: Alfred Nobel Prize Book, December 10, 1938, blue binding with gold. The citation is in Swedish, and translates as "for his demonstrations of the existence of new radioactive elements produced by neutron irradiation, and for his related discovery of nuclear reactions brought about by slow neutrons."
    Letter from George Pegram to Admiral S. C. Hooper
Original piece housed in Box 11, Folder 4 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.
Summary: Carbon copy of letter from George Pegram to Admiral S. C. Hooper (U.S. Navy), dated March 16, 1939. There is a pencil notation from Pegram to Fermi, directing his attention to the contents of the letter.
    Letter from Enrico Fermi to Leo Szilard
Original letter housed in Box 11, Folder 17 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.
Summary: Letter from Enrico Fermi to Leo Szilard, dated July 9, 1939. This letter is one in a series of letters exchanged between the two men, in which they discuss they discuss possible use of carbon as a means to slow neutrons in a nuclear chain reaction.
    Letter from Vannevar Bush to Enrico Fermi
Original letter housed in Box 16, Folder 17 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.
Summary: Letter from Vannevar Bush, then Director, Office of Scientific Research and Development, U.S. Office for Emergency Management, dated August 19, 1941. In this letter, Bush requests Fermi to accept an appointment as Chairman of the Consultants on Theoretical Aspects Susection of the Uranium Section. In accepting this volunteer position, Fermi is officially assigned to what comes to be known as the Manhattan Project.
    Letter from Arthur Compton to Enrico Fermi
Original letter housed in Box 9, Folder 20 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.

Summary: Letter from Arthur Compton to Enrico Fermi, dated December 2, 1953. Compton wrote on the occasion of the eleventh anniversary of the first nuclear chain reaction.
   

Notes and program for Maniac computer
Originals housed in Box 22, Folder 1 of the Enrico Fermi Collection in the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center.

Summary: Fermi's notes, flowchart and computer program for calculating cyclotron orbits, written for Maniac computer, 1951.
   

Nuclear Chain Reaction: Forty Years Later
Note: This work is not a part of the Enrico Fermi Collection, but was included as a part of the project to digitize selected items from the Enrico Fermi Collection.

Edited by Robert G. Sachs.
Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1984
Session I, HISTORY OF THE CHAIN REACTION available online: "Historical Background of the CP-1 Experiment" by Robert G. Sachs, "The First Chain Reaction" by Herbert L. Anderson, "Beginning of 1939 Science Service Press Release," "December 2, 1942: The event and the people" by Albert Wattenberg (reprinted with permission from The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, December 1982), "The Politics of Control--The Role of Chicago Scientists" by Alice Kimball Smith, and "Memories of the McMahon Act" by Edward Levi.
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