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University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Henry Gordon Gale Papers 1889-1948

© 2000 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary

Title:

Gale, Henry Gordon. Papers

Dates:

1889-1948(inclusive)

Size:

12.5 linear ft. (15 boxes)

Repository:

Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library,

1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637

Abstract:

The papers of Henry Gordon Gale comprise 12.5 linear feet of personal and professional material, spanning the years 1889-1948. The materials document Gale's career as a physicist, from his time as a student in the early years of the University of Chicago, to his retirement from the Faculty of the Physics Department in 1940. The papers consist of professional and personal correspondence; notes, manuscripts, and reprints; and personal material such as photographs, biographical material, and documents from his Army service and university employment. The collection also includes some correspondence and personal material of his wife, Agnes Spofford Cook Gale.

Information on Use

Citation

When quoting material from this collection the preferred citation is:

Gale, Henry Gordon. Papers, [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Henry Gordon Gale was born September 12, 1874 in Aurora, Illinois. His father, Eli Holbrook Gale, was a physician trained at University of Pennsylvania. Henry Gale's mother, Adelaide Parker Gale, died six weeks after his birth. He was then raised by his maternal grandparents in rural Illinois.

Gale received his A.B. degree from the University of Chicago in 1896. He continued on to a Ph.D. in Physics in 1899, joining the Faculty in the Department of Physics that same year. He obtained full professorship in 1916 and retired in 1940.

During his career at the University of Chicago, Gale held a number of administrative offices. He served as Dean of the Colleges from 1908 to1922, Dean of the Ogden Graduate School of Science from 1922 to1930, and Dean of the Division of the Physical Sciences from 1931 to 1940. Gale was Chairman of the Department of Physics from 1925 to 1940 and Editor of the Astrophysical Journal from 1912 to 1940. He held the office of president of the Physics Club of Chicago from 1931 until 1940, and was given honorary lifetime membership in the organization upon his retirement. Gale was widely published in the field of astrophysics; with Robert A. Millikan, he co-authored textbooks for high school and college physics courses.

While his career as an astrophysicist was centered at the University of Chicago, Gale also conducted research at Mount Wilson Solar Observatory in Pasadena, California. While working in Pasadena in 1909, Gale was involved in an electrical accident which left him badly burned; he was hospitalized for two months to undergo skin graft operations.

In addition to his career as a physicist, Gale served in the Army during World War I. He attained the rank of lieutenant colonel after serving in the United States and France, was cited for "especially meritorious and conspicuous service" by General Pershing, and received France's decoration of the Legion of Honor.

While a student at the University of Chicago, Gale met Agnes Spofford Cook, daughter of Dr. John W. Cook, educator and first President of Northern Illinois University in DeKalb. Agnes Cook had attended Wellesley College for one year before continuing her studies at the University of Chicago. The two married in 1901, and their daughter Beatrice was born in 1904. Agnes Gale published a number of poems and narratives for children, including an adaptation of Homer, Achilles and Hector: Iliad Stories Retold for Boys and Girls.

Henry Gordon Gale died November 16, 1942.

Scope Note

The Henry G. Gale Papers have been divided into four series: Series I: Personal Materials, Series II: Correspondence, Series III: Manuscripts and Reprints, and Series IV: Visual and Oversize Materials.

The concentration of material is from the years 1900 to 1929, constituting an incomplete record of Gale's career. Series I documents Gale's service in the Army during World War I, and also contains material related to the terms of his employment at University of Chicago. Series II contains Gale's correspondence, concentrated in 1928 to 1929. Agnes Gale's correspondence, most often from her husband and her family, is concentrated in the years 1900 to 1906. Series III contains notes from Gale's graduate study, a large amount of undated notes and manuscripts, and reprints of his articles published between 1910 to 1937, most often in the Astrophysical Journal. Series IV contains photographs, many of which are unidentified, and oversize material from Series I-III.

Related Resources

The following resources are located in the Special Collections Research Center:

http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/e/spcl/phyast.html

Subject Headings

INVENTORY

Series I: Personal

This series contains personal and biographical materials of Henry G. Gale, and a small number of items belonging to his wife, Agnes Spofford Cook Gale. Included in this series is material related to Gale's Army service during World War I, a reprint of a biographical article appearing in Astrophysical Journal after Gale's death, publications of professional organizations to which Gale belonged, and newspaper and magazine clippings pertaining to Gale's work. Papers of Agnes Gale include unrelated periodical clippings, notes, and a small letter opener. Photographs and oversize materials, including Army service documents and newspaper clippings, are found in Series IV: Visual and Oversize Materials.

Box 1   Folder 1

University of Chicago employment, correspondence and documents,

1899-1940 (see Box 15)

Box 1   Folder 2

Army service, correspondence and documents,

1917-1918

Box 1   Folder 3-4

Army service, correspondence and documents,

1918

Box 1   Folder 5

Army service, correspondence and documents,

1919

Box 1   Folder 6

Army service, correspondence and documents,

1919-1922

Box 1   Folder 7

Army service, correspondence and documents,

n.d.

Box 1   Folder 8

University of Chicago War Service, reprints,

1917

Box 1   Folder 9

Reprint, Henry Crew, "Henry Gordon Gale, 1874-1942, " Astrophysical Journal 97:2,

March 1943

Box 1   Folder 10

Bulletins of professional organizations,

1926-1940

Box 1   Folder 11

Newspaper and magazine clippings,

n.d.

Box 1   Folder 12

Agnes Gale, unidentified manuscript,

n.d.

Box 1   Folder 13

Agnes Gale, notebook,

n.d.

Box 1   Folder 14

Letter opener

Series II: Correspondence

This series contains correspondence of Henry Gordon Gale and his wife, Agnes Spofford Cook Gale. Subseries 1, spanning the years 1895-1941, contains general correspondence of Henry Gale. This subseries includes material of both a professional and personal nature. Almost half of the correspondence dates from 1928-1929, while the remainder represents scattered points in his career. Subseries 2, spanning the years 1889-1948, contains personal correspondence written to Agnes Gale by Henry Gale, friends and members of the Cook family. This subseries also includes a small amount of correspondence pertaining to Agnes Gale's literary publications. Correspondence from Henry Gale often uses the nicknames "Bitty Wa" or "Wa Wa" for Agnes Gale, "Buck Wa" for himself, and "Bims" for their daughter, Beatrice. Each subseries is arranged chronologically, then alphabetically by name of correspondent. Oversize materials from this series are found in Series IV: Visual and Oversize Materials, Box 15.

Subseries 1: Henry Gordon Gale

Box 2   Folder 1

General,

1895

Box 2   Folder 2

General,

1906

Box 2   Folder 3

Yerkes Observatory, Mount Wilson Solar Observatory,

1907-1909

Box 2   Folder 4

Electrical accident, Pasadena, A-G,

1909

Box 2   Folder 5

Electrical accident, Pasadena, H-O,

1909

Box 2   Folder 6

Electrical accident, Pasadena, P-Z,

1909

Box 2   Folder 7

University of Chicago College Deanship,

1912-1915

Box 2   Folder 8

Mount Wilson Solar Observatory,

1912-1915

Box 2   Folder 9

Yerkes Observatory,

1912-1915

Box 2   Folder 10

General, Adams-Association,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 11

General, Bartky-Birge,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 12

General, Black-Burns,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 13

General, Campbell-Compton,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 14

General, Corson-Cutler,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 15

General, Dimond-Elliott,

1928-1929 (see Box 15)

Box 2   Folder 16

General, Follett-Frost,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 17

General, General Electric-Guggenheim,

1928-1929

Box 2   Folder 18

General, Harding-Hubbard,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 1

General, Illinois-Kinsley,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 2

General, Lark-Lewis,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 3

General, McBain-Michelson,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 4

General, Miller-Modesti,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 5

General, Newton-Ott,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 6

General, Peoria-Quarrie,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 7

General, Rosenwald-Russell,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 8

General, Sandblad-Slater,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 9

General, Sperry-Swift,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 10

General, Tiffany-Vincent,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 11

General, Wahlin-Wilharm,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 12

General,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 13

Correspondence of others,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 14

Unidentified,

1928-1929

Box 3   Folder 15

General,

1931-1933 (see Box 15)

Box 3   Folder 16

General,

1940-1941

Subseries 2: Agnes Spofford Cook Gale

Box 4   Folder 1

Cook, John W.,

1889

Box 4   Folder 2

Cook family,

1892

Box 4   Folder 3

General,

1894

Box 4   Folder 4

Unidentified,

1894

Box 4   Folder 5

General,

1895

Box 4   Folder 6

General,

1896

Box 4   Folder 7

Cook-Draper,

1897

Box 4   Folder 8

Gale, Henry G.,

1897

Box 4   Folder 9

Sheppard, J. J.,

1897

Box 4   Folder 10

Cook family,

1898

Box 4   Folder 11

Gale, Henry G.,

1898

Box 4   Folder 12

Gale, Henry G.,

1899

Box 4   Folder 13

Unidentified,

1899

Box 4   Folder 14

Gale, Henry G.,

1900

Box 4   Folder 15

Sheppard, J. J.,

1900

Box 5   Folder 1

Cook family,

1901

Box 5   Folder 2

Gale, Henry G., January-April

1901

Box 5   Folder 3

Gale, Henry G., April-August

1901

Box 5   Folder 4

Herdeen, Margaret,

1901

Box 5   Folder 5

Cook, John W.,

1902

Box 5   Folder 6

Gale, Henry G.,

1902

Box 5   Folder 7

Cowell, John,

1904

Box 5   Folder 8

Gale, Henry G.,

March 1904 (see Box 15)

Box 5   Folder 9

Gale, Henry G.,

April 1904

Box 5   Folder 10

Gale, Henry G.,

July 1904

Box 5   Folder 11

Gale, Henry G.,

August 1904

Box 5   Folder 12

Gale, Henry G.,

September 1904

Box 5   Folder 13

Gale, Henry G.,

October 1904

Box 6   Folder 1

Gale, Henry G.,

November 1904

Box 6   Folder 2

Gale, Henry G.,

December 1904

Box 6   Folder 3

MacLeish-Richardson,

1904

Box 6   Folder 4

Cook family,

1905

Box 6   Folder 5

Gale, Henry G.,

January 1905

Box 6   Folder 6

Gale, Henry G.,

February 1905

Box 6   Folder 7

Gale, Henry G.,

July 1905

Box 6   Folder 8

Gale, Henry G.,

August 1905

Box 6   Folder 9

Gale, Henry G.,

December 1905

Box 6   Folder 10

Judson, Henry Pratt,

1905

Box 7   Folder 1

Gale, Henry G.,

January 1906

Box 7   Folder 2

Gale, Henry G.,

February 1906

Box 7   Folder 3

Gale, Henry G.,

March 1906

Box 7   Folder 4

Gale, Henry G.,

April 1906

Box 7   Folder 5

Gale, Henry G.,

May 1906

Box 7   Folder 6

Gale, Henry G.,

June 1906

Box 7   Folder 7

Gale, Henry G.,

July 1906

Box 7   Folder 8

Gale, Henry G.,

August 1906

Box 7   Folder 9

Gale, Henry G.,

October 1906

Box 7   Folder 10

Gale, Henry G., n.d.,

1906

Box 7   Folder 11

Gale, Henry G.,

May 1909

Box 7   Folder 12

Gale, Henry G.,

June 1909

Box 7   Folder 13

Gale, Henry G., n.d.,

1909

Box 7   Folder 14

General,

1913-1948

Box 7   Folder 15

General,

n.d.

Box 7   Folder 16

Unidentified,

n.d.

Series III: Manuscripts and Reprints

Spanning the years 1896-1941, this series contains Gale's notes from lectures, reading, and research; manuscripts composed by Gale and others; and reprints of his publications, which were often produced in collaboration with one or more colleagues. Notes and notebooks generally pertain to Gale's graduate work at University of Chicago; a large amount of this material is undated. Typewritten manuscript material is also undated. Reprints are of articles appearing in scientific journals, most often the Astrophysical Journal. Materials from this series have been arranged into three subseries: Notes, Manuscripts, and Reprints. Each subseries has been organized chronologically.

Subseries 1: Notes

Box 8   Folder 1

Notebook, Electricity and Magnetism,

1896

Box 8   Folder 2

Notebooks, Integral Calculus,

1896

Box 8   Folder 3-4

Notebooks, Wave Motion,

1897

Box 8   Folder 5

Notebooks, Light,

1897-1898

Box 8   Folder 6

Notebooks, Analytical Mechanics,

1898

Box 8   Folder 7

Notebook, Electricity and Magnetism,

1898

Box 9   Folder 1

Notebook, unidentified,

1898

Box 9   Folder 2

Notebooks, Theory of Functions of a Complete Variable,

1898

Box 9   Folder 3

Notebook, Projective Geometry,

1898

Box 9   Folder 4

Notebook, Kinetic Theory and Thermodynamics,

1898

Box 9   Folder 5

Notebook, Twisted Curves and Surfaces,

1900

Box 9   Folder 6

Notebook, unidentified,

1901

Box 9   Folder 7

Notes, Wave Motion,

1908

Box 9   Folder 8

Notes, Def. Integrals and Sloughs,

n.d. (see Box 15)

Box 10   Folder 1

Kinetic Theory and Thermo-Dynamics,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 2

Notes, Nearly Circular Orbits,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 3

Notes, Partial Differentiation,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 4

Notebook, Physical Computations,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 5-6

Notes, Bell lectures,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 7-10

Lecture notes,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 11

Notebook,

n.d.

Box 10   Folder 17

Notes,

n.d. (see Box 15)

Subseries 2: Manuscripts

Box 11   Folder 1

Manuscript, "The Interplay of Theory and Experiment in Modern Spectroscopy, "

n.d.

Box 11   Folder 2

Manuscripts, A.A. Michelson, "The Effect of the Earth's Rotation on the Velocity of Light, "

n.d.

Box 11   Folder 3

An Account of Scientific Research at the University of Chicago, "

n.d.

Box 11   Folder 4

Miscellaneous manuscripts,

n.d.

Box 11   Folder 5

Student work,

1911-1927

Subseries 3: Reprints

Box 11   Folder 6

1,

January 1910

Box 11   Folder 7

1,

January 1912

Box 11   Folder 8

5,

June 1913

Box 11   Folder 9

2,

March 1916

Box 11   Folder 10

Reprint, Henry G. Gale, "How the Spectroscope Reveals the Structure of Atoms, " Bulletin of the Ohio State University,

August 15, 1919

Box 11   Folder 11

5,

December 1919; Journal of Geology XXVII: 8, November-December 1919

Box 11   Folder 12

2,

March 1924

Box 11   Folder 13

3,

April 1925

Box 11   Folder 14

2,

March 1929

Box 11   Folder 15

2,

March 1928

Box 11   Folder 16

Reprint, Henry G. Gale, "A New Ruling Engine, " unidentified imprint,

1935

Box 11   Folder 17

2,

March 1937

Box 11   Folder 18

Miscellaneous reprints,

1901-1941 (see Box 15)

Series IV: Visual and Oversize Materials

This series contains photographs of organizations to which Gale belonged, and several individual portraits, many of which are unidentified. Also included in this series are periodical clippings and a WWI-era map of Northern France. Oversize materials from Series I-III are found in Box 15 of this series.

Box 12   Folder 1

Photograph, portrait of John Henry Vincent,

June 1899

Box 12   Folder 2

Photograph, group portrait of Wellesley College students,

n.d.

Box 12   Folder 3

Photographs, unidentified portraits,

n.d.

Box 13   Folder 1

Photograph, group portrait of Ordnance Supply School, Camp Jackson, Columbia, S.C.,

March 1918

Box 13   Folder 2

Photograph, group portrait of American Physical Society,

April 26, 1924

Box 13   Folder 3

Photograph, group portrait of Association of American Universities, Baltimore,

n.d.

Box 14   Folder 1

Map of Northern France,

1917

Box 14   Folder 2

Magazine clipping,

1898

Box 14   Folder 3

Newspaper clippings of Gale's activities,

1924-1929

Box 15   Folder 1

University of Chicago employment, correspondence and documents,

1899-1940

Box 15   Folder 2

General correspondence, Dimond-Elliott,

1928-1929

Box 15   Folder 3

General correspondence,

1931-1933

Box 15   Folder 4

Agnes Gale, correspondence, Gale, Henry G.,

March 1904

Box 15   Folder 5

Notes, Def. Integrals and Sloughs,

n.d.

Box 15   Folder 6

Notes,

n.d.

Box 15   Folder 7

Miscellaneous reprints,

1901-1941