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Collection Overview

Smyth, Henry De Wolf, 1898 - Correspondence
Henry De Wolf Smyth Papers
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1 box and 0.2 linear feet
Storage Note:
Firestone Library (mss): Box 1


Consists of selected material by and about Henry De Wolf Smyth, the American physicist and diplomat who figured prominently in the development of atomic energy, the Manhattan Project, and the production of the atomic bomb.

Collection Description & Creator Information


The collection consists of selected material by and about Henry De Wolf Smyth. Included are two small address books, correspondence with his cousin Edward T. Creighton, a photocopy of Smyth's autobiography (29 pp.), material related to Smyth's memorial service and eulogies from his friends, report cards from Lawrenceville School and Princeton University, a copy of a speech delivered at a symposium at Jadwin Gym (Princeton University), photographs of Smyth at different stages of life, and The "Smyth Report," an offprint of the Princeton University Library Chronicle about Smyth's book by the same title. Also included is a small pin commemorating the "A-Bomb" and the "Manhattan Project."

Collection Creator Biography:

Smyth, Henry De Wolf, 1898 - Correspondence

Henry De Wolf Smyth graduated with the Princeton Class of 1918. He is best known as author of the "Smyth Report" (1945), the official government report on the development of the atomic bomb. Smyth had a long and varied career as a physicist, diplomat, instructor, policy maker, and administrator. At Princeton University Smyth was named assistant professor in 1925, associate professor in 1929, and professor in 1936; and in 1935, he was named chairman of the Physics Department. Taking leave from his position, Smyth began work on the Uranium committee of the National Defense Research Committee in 1940, serving as a consultant on the Manhattan Project from 1943 to 1945. Although he returned to Princeton after the war, Smyth left academia to become Commissioner of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) from 1949 to 1954, and subsequently served as U.S. Representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), from 1961 to 1970.

Collection History


Gift of Mrs. Ellen Camp on June 3, 2009 (AM2009-126).


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Dina Britain on June 16, 2009. Finding aid written by Elizabeth Mulvey on June 16, 2009. Folder Inventory added by Hilde Creager '2015 in 2012.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to RBSC Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.

Credit this material:

Henry De Wolf Smyth Papers; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184
Storage Note:
Firestone Library (mss): Box 1