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University of Chicago Library

Guide to the William D. Harkins. Papers 1877-1988

© 2007 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary

Title:

Harkins, William D. Papers

Dates:

1877-1988

Size:

1 linear ft. (2 boxes)

Repository:

Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.

Abstract:

William D. (William Draper) Harkins, Professor of Chemistry. The William D. Harkins’ papers are comprised mostly of documents which predate his career at Chicago. The collection contains a series of reprints and typescripts, pertains to the research for which Harkins is most famous, as well as documents related to Harkins’ work at the University of Montana on the effects of smoke from the Anaconda copper smelter on local livestock. The remaining documents pertain to Harkins’ family, his father-in-law, Henry A. Hatheway, and his brother-in-law, Thomas G. Hatheway, Harkins’ personal and professional correspondence and photographs of family members.

Information on Use

Access

No restrictions.

Citation

When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Harkins, William D. Papers, [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

William D. Harkins was born in Titusville, Pennsylvania in 1873. After a successful childhood dalliance in oil speculation, Harkins immersed himself in science. He received his Ph.D. degree from Stanford University in 1907, and prior to his appointment at Chicago, served as Professor of Chemistry at the University of Montana from 1900 to 1912. In 1909, Harkins worked as a research fellow at the Institut für physikalische Chemie und Elektrochemie Karlsruhe in Germany, and in 1911, as a research associate in the Laboratory of Physical Chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1912, Harkins was appointed Assistant Professor of Chemistry at the University of Chicago. Two years later, he was promoted to Associate Professor, and in 1917, was granted tenure as Professor of Chemistry. Harkins is perhaps most famous for his research on the neutron in the 1920s and 1930s. This research led in part, to Harkins’ appointment as the Andrew MacLeish Distinguished Service Professor of Chemistry in 1931. Although he retired in 1939, Harkins busied himself with research on emulsion polymerization until his death in 1951.

Scope Note

The William D. Harkins’ papers are comprised mostly of documents which predate his career at Chicago. The collection contains a series of reprints and typescripts, pertains to the research for which Harkins is most famous, as well as documents related to Harkins’ work at the University of Montana on the effects of smoke from the Anaconda copper smelter on local livestock. The remaining documents pertain to Harkins’ family, his father-in-law, Henry A. Hatheway, and his brother-in-law, Thomas G. Hatheway, Harkins’ personal and professional correspondence and photographs of family members.

Related Resources

The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:

Several other archival collections contain documents related to Harkins. Press releases, newspaper clippings, and bibliographic references on Harkins and his work can be found in the Archival Biographical File and in the Robert S. Mulliken Papers. Rachel Fuller Brown, a graduate student in the Department of Chemistry in the 1920s, studied with Harkins, and her course notes have been preserved in the Rachel Fuller Brown Notebooks. The Presidents’ Papers, 1889-1925 and 1925-1945, contain materials on the Department of Chemistry during Harkins’ stay at the University.

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Subject Headings

INVENTORY

Box 1   Folder 1

Correspondence, 1887-1905

Box 1   Folder 2

Correspondence, January-July 1906

Box 1   Folder 3

August-December 1906

Box 1   Folder 4

Correspondence, 1907

Box 1   Folder 5

Correspondence, 1908-1911 and n. d.

Box 1   Folder 6

Reprints, 1926-1946

  • "The Synthesis and Disintegration of Atoms as Revealed by the Photography of Wilson Cloud Tracks," reprint, 1926
  • "The Frequency of Occurrence of the Disintegrative-Synthesis of Oxygen 17 from Nitrogen 14 and Helium," reprint, 1930
  • "The Masses of O17," reprint, 1931
  • "Periodic System of Atomic Nuclei and the Principle of Regularity and Continuity of Series," reprint, 1931
  • "Atomic Disintegration by a Relatively Slow Neutron," reprint, 1933
  • "Disintegration of Flourine Nuclei by Neutrons and the Probable Formation of a New Isotope of Nitrogen (N16)," reprint, 1933
  • "Disintegration of Neon Nuclei by Fast Neutrons," reprint, 1933
  • "The Disintegration of the Nuclei of Nitrogen and Other Light Atoms by Neutrons," reprint, 1933
  • "Emission of G-rays by Nuclei Excited by Neutrons, and Nuclear Energy Levels," reprint, 1933
  • "The Neutron, Atom Building, and a Nuclear Exclusion Principle," reprint, 1933
  • "A Neutron of High Velocity, and Energy Relations for Nuclear Disintegration by Non-Capture," reprint, 1933
  • "The New Kind of Matter: Element Zero or Neutron," reprint, 1933
  • "Artificial Radioactivity and the Conversion of Kinetic into G-ray Energy Associated with Nuclear Disintegration by Neutrons," reprint, 1934
  • "Atomic Disintegration by ‘Non-Capture’," reprint, 1934
  • "Inelastic Collisions with Changes of Mass and the Problems of Nuclear Disintegration with Capture or Non-Capture of a Neutron or Another Nuclear Projectile," reprint, 1934
  • "The Mass of the Neutron," reprint, 1934
  • "The Heat of the Stars and the Building of Atoms in the Universe," typescript, 1938
  • "The Neutron, the Intermediate or Compound Nucleus, and the Atomic Bomb," reprint, 1946
Box 1   Folder 7

Anaconda Smelter Materials, c. 1909

  • Map of the Coeur D’Alene Mining District, William A. Nichols, Mining Broker, Spokane, Washington
  • Subpoena to the Circuit Court of the United States, F. J. Bliss vs. Anaconda Manufacturing Corporation, January 18, 1909
  • Supreme Court of the United States, State of Georgia vs. the Tennessee Copper Company and Ducktown Sulphur, Copper, and Iron Company, deposition of W. D. Harkins
  • Notes on the Anaconda smelter and on samples from the Deer Lodge Valley Farmers’ Association
Box 1   Folder 8

Notes and Reprints, 1906-1918

  • Program of the Thirty-Fifth General Meeting of the American Chemical Society and the Meeting of Section C of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, December 27-31, 1906
  • Hannah L. Wessling, "The Use of Wheat Flour Substitutes in Baking," Farmers’ Bulletin 955, United States Department of Agriculture, March 1918
  • Dr. R. Stelzner, "Wie stelle ich fest, ob eine bestimmte organische Verbindung schon bekannt ist, und wo finde ich die einschlagige Literatur," 1906
  • Chemistry notes and diagrams
Box 1   Folder 9

Henry A. Hatheway and Thomas G. Hatheway, correspondence and financial records, 1877-1911

Box 1   Folder 10

Newspaper clippings (Daily Missoulian, New York Times, Daily Maroon, Anaconda Standard, Chicago Daily Tribune)

Box 1   Folder 11

Maps, Financial and Biographical Materials, 1904-1988

  • Account with Southwestern National Bank, Los Angeles
  • Mackinac Island, tour guide, 1926
  • Sailing schedule, Cunard and Anchor Lines, 1933
  • Map of Capitol Hill subdivision, Seattle, Washington
  • Estados Unidos Mexicanos, Gobierno Del Estado Libre y Soberano de Baja California
  • Death certificate for Alice Marion Harkins, March 8, 1988
  • Marriage license, June 13, 1904
  • Financial and insurance materials
Box 2   Folder 1-4

Photographs, Harkins’ children, in-laws, and unidentified others