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Robert Mulliken - Harrison Shull correspondence


Held at: Science History Institute Archives [Contact Us]315 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Science History Institute Archives. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

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Robert S. Mulliken was born on June 7, 1896 in Newburyport, MA. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Chicago receiving his Ph. D. in 1921. He was exposed to quantum theory by Robert A. Millikan while at the University of Chicago and continued his post-doctoral studies with E.C. Kemble at Harvard where he also became acquainted with Robert Oppenheimer, Harold Urey and John C. Slater. Trips to Europe in 1926 and 1927 allowed him to meet with Erwin Schrodinger, Paul Dirac and Werner Heisenberg among other luminaries. After a stint teaching at NYU he returned to the University of Chicago where he spent the remainder of his career. During WWII he ran the University of Chicago Information Office for their Plutonium project and after the war he concentrated on mathematical formulas relating to the molecular-orbital theory. Mulliken was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1936 as its youngest member and was the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1966. He retired from the University of Chicago in 1985 and died at his home in Arlington, VA on October 31, 1986.

Harrison Shull, son of botanist George H. Shull was educated at Princeton University and the University of California, Berkeley, receiving his Ph. D. in 1948. He taught at Indiana University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Chancellor of the University of Colorado at Boulder. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1969. Harrison Shull died in 2003.

For a more detailed inventory, please view this record in our library catalog:

The collection covers a nice span of time and, although most of the letters deal with matters routine to academic chemists, such as grant applications, travel plans, etc, there are discussions of both men's work in the field of Quantum Chemistry scattered throughout.

The majority of this collection has been digitized and is available online in our Digital Collections:

Method of acquisition--purchase;; Date of acquisition--2014..

Science History Institute Archives

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