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ARCHIVAL COLLECTIONS

Thomas Darlington Cope Papers
1912-1960 (bulk 1939-1956)

UPT 50 C782

2.0 Cubic feet

Prepared by Joseph-James Ahern

June 2010

Access to collections is granted in accordance with the Protocols for the University Archives and Records Center.

PROVENANCE

Gift of Mrs. Thomas D. Cope 

 

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Arrangement

The collection is organized into four series: Correspondence, Mason and Dixon Line Research, Research and Writings, and Works by Others. With a few exceptions the collections original order has been maintained. 

 

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BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

Thomas Darlington Cope was born on December 28, 1880 in East Bradford, Pennsylvania. After graduation from the State Normal School in West Chester, Pennsylvania he entered the University of Pennsylvania where he received his Bachelors of Arts in 1903, and Ph.D. in Physics in 1915. Cope also studied at Cornell University and Berlin University - where he studied under Max Planck from 1912-1913. Copes entire professional career was spent at the University of Pennsylvania - starting as an instructor in 1906, eventually becoming an assistant professor in 1913 and professor in 1922, eventually retiring in 1952. Cope teaching career was briefly interrupted during World War I when he served as a captain in the U. S. Army Signal Corps and Air Service at Langley Field. 

Cope was very active in professional activities - including the Pennsylvania Academy of Science, the American Association of University Professors, the American Institute of Physics, and American Association of Physics Teachers. His prominence as a historian of science arose from his study of Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon, the English surveyors who were brought to America to help settle the border dispute between Maryland, Delaware, and Pennsylvania that resulted in the famous Mason-Dixon Line. Cope's background as a physicist gave him considerable insight into Mason and Dixon's journals, providing a scientific and technological context of their work. Between 1939 and 1956 he published numerous articles on the survey in historical and scientific journals. Cope's research on Mason and Dixon is still considered authoritative today. 

Cope died on December 13, 1964 at his home in Wayne, Pennsylvania. 

 

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SCOPE AND CONTENT

The first series of the collection contains Cope's personal correspondence from 1912-1956. The second series, Mason and Dixon Line Research, consists of historical research, correspondence, and articles written by Cope relating to Charles Mason, Jeremiah Dixon, and their boundary survey. The Research and Writings Series contains Cope's articles and notes relating to other topics. Finally, Works by Others contains a few pamphlets on the history of science and teaching, as well as articles written by Provost Edgar Fahs Smith. 

Additional Thomas Darlington Cope papers can be found at the American Philosophical Society Library. 

 

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CONTROLLED ACCESS HEADINGS

Corporate Name(s)

  • American Association of Physics Teachers.
  • American Institute of Physics.
  • American Philosophical Society.
  • Pennsylvania Academy of Science.
  • University of Pennsylvania Fund.
  • University of Pennsylvania. Dept. of Physics.

Genre(s)

  • Articles.
  • Correspondence.
  • Diaries.
  • Drafts (preliminary versions).
  • Manuscripts (for publication).

Geographic Name(s)

  • Maryland--Surveys.
  • Mason-Dixon Line.
  • Pennsylvania--Surveys.

Occupation(s)

  • College teachers.
  • Historians of science.
  • Physicists.

Personal Name(s)

  • Dixon, Jeremiah, 1733-1779
  • Mason, Charles, 1728-1768

Subject(s)

  • Science--History--18 century.--Pennsylvania
  • Science--History--18th century.--Maryland

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INVENTORY

 

Correspondence 

Box

Folder

American Association of Physics Teachers - Correspondence, 1941-1943 

1

1

American Association of Physics Teachers - Meetings, 1936-44 

1

2

American Association of University Professors - Loyalty Oath, 1951-1953 

1

3

American Physical Society, 1946 

1

4

Boley, August, 1913-1961 

1

5

Charitable Contributions Acknowledgements, 1951-1956 

1

6

Chen, Henry S.C., 1958 

1

7

Cope, Anna and William, 1912-1913 

1

8

Cope, Jesse, 1912-1913 

1

9

Crowell, William J. - paper on ether, 1946 

1

10

Cummings, Hubertis M., 1960 

1

11

Dreier, William H., 1954 

1

12

Eckhardt, Englehardt August, 1913-1959 

1

13

Franklin Institute Tributes, 1959-1965 

1

14

Goodspeed, Arthur W. (1860-1943), 1946-1958 

1

15

Heyl, Paul R., 1930-1942 

1

16

Hynes, Lee P., 1957 

1

17

Ingram, William T., 1912 

1

18

Kains, E. D., 1942 

1

19

Knepp, Thomas H., 1957 

1

20

Meirs, William R., 1954 

1

21

Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1939-1956 

1

22

Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science, 1947-1951 

1

23

Physics Building Fundraising, 1954 

1

24

Physics Instruments, 1956 

1

25

Reconversion Fund, 1945-1946 

1

26

Richards, Horace C., death of, 1945 

1

27

Rittenhouse Astronomical Society, 1952 

1

28

Schoolmen's Week Science Program, 1951-1952 

1

29

Sutton, Richard M., 1947 

1

30

University of California - Berkeley, 1949 

1

31

University of Pennsylvania, 1947-1952 

1

32

University of Pennsylvania Fund, 1926-1940 

1

33

Wiley Bulletin, 1950 

1

34

Wilmington Secondary Schools, 1946 

1

35

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Personal Notebooks 

Box

Folder

1942-1943 

1

36

1944 

1

37

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Mason and Dixon Line Research 

Box

Folder

Correspondence 

American Philosophical Society, 1945-1948 

1

38

Boundary Markers and the Jersey Quadrant, 1953-1958 

1

39

Brown, Lloyd A.1955-1956 

1

40

Dixon, Lionel G., Jr., 1958 

1

41

Doerflinger, William, 1958 

1

42

Eckhardt, George H., 1949-1952 

1

43

General Correspondence, 1944-1952 

1

44

Haber, Francis C., 1956-1958 

1

45

Hamer, Philip M., 1957 

1

46

John Bevis Transit Instrument, 1953-1954 

1

47

John Ellicott Astronomical Clock, 1940 

1

48

John Shelton Clock, 1948-1952 

1

49

Kent, Donald H., 1947-1948 

1

50

Mahoney, William T. and H. Clay Reed, 1951-1953 

1

51

Price, Derek, and David P. Wheatland, 1957-1958 

1

52

Robinson, H. W., 1947-1948 

1

53

Robinson, H. W., 1949 

1

54

Robinson, H. W., 1950 

1

55

Robinson, H. W., 1951-1962 

1

56

Roger Joseph Boscovich, 1957-1958 

1

57

Royal Society, 1949 

2

1

Russ, William A., Jr., 1958 

2

2

Seddon, Robert E., 1958-1959 

2

3

Smart, C.E., 1960 

2

4

Star Gazer's Stone, 1950 

2

5

Torrence, Robert M., 1958 

2

6

Notes 

Bibliographical Notes, 19424-1951 

2

7

Degrees Along the West Line, 1948-1949 Folder 1 

2

8

Degrees Along the West Line, 1948-1949 Folder 2 

2

9

John Shelton's Clock, n.d. 

2

10

List of Persons Interested in Mason-Dixon Line, n.d 

2

11

New Sources to Investigate, 1956-1957 

2

12

Notebook: Instruments and Their Makers - Correspondence, 1942-1943 

2

13

Notebook: Instruments Used in the Surveys of Boundaries, 1949-1953 

2

14

Notebook: Mason and Dixon's Daily Journal, 1942-1949 

2

15

Papers 

Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon drafts, 1941 

2

16

Charles Mason, Jeremiah Dixon and the Royal Society, 1951 

2

17

A Clock Sent Thither by the Royal Society, 1950 

2

18

The First Scientific Expedition of Mason and Dixon first draft, 1944 

2

19

The First Scientific Expedition of Mason and Dixon publication drafts, 1944-1945 

2

20

The First Scientific Expedition of Mason and Dixon reviews, 1944 

2

21

The First Scientific Expedition of Mason and Dixon PENNSYLVANIA HISTORY, 1945 

2

22

A Frame of Reference for Masion and Dixon draft, n.d. 

2

23

The Jersey Quadrant Used in Pennsylvania drafts, 1953 

2

24

John Shelton's Astronomical Clock Used by Mason and Dixon at Brandywine, 1944-1945 

2

25

Mason and Dixon - English Men of Science correspondence, 1948-1949 

2

26

Mason and Dixon - English Men of Science drafts, 1949 

2

27

More About Mason and Dixon, n.d. 

2

28

A Proposal of Interest to Naturalists, 1947 

2

29

Some Contacts of Benjamin Franklin with Mason and Dixon and their Work, 1951 

2

30

Some Local Scholars Who Counselled the Proprietors of Pennsylvania and Their Commissioners during the Boundary Surveys of the 1760s, 1955 

2

31

Westward Five Degrees in Longitude, 1948 

2

32

When the Maryland-Pennsylvania Boundary Survey Changed from a Political and Legal Struggle into a Scientific and Technological Project, edits 1954 

2

33

When the Maryland-Pennsylvania Boundary Survey Changed from a Political and Legal Struggle into a Scientific and Technological Project, typed draft 1954 

2

34

When the Maryland-Pennsylvania Boundary Survey Changed from a Political and Legal Struggle into a Scientific and Technological Project written draft 1954 

2

35

When the Stars Interrupted the Running of a Meridian Line Northward up the Delmarva Peninsula, 1956 

2

36

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Research and Writings 

Box

Folder

Eighteenth Century Scientists Biographical Sketches, n.d. 

2

37

Foreword for DAVID RITTENHOUSE, by J.E. Ford, 1946 

2

38

A Mountain in Perthshire correspondence, 1954 

2

39

A Mountain in Perthshire draft, 1954 

2

40

Schichallion Mountain Material, 1953 

2

41

Soul of Lodestone, by Alfred Still. Review, 1946. 

2

42

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Works by Others 

Box

Folder

Pamphlets and reports, miscellaneous, 1916-1932 

2

43

Smith, Edgar Fahs, 1914-1937 

2

44

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