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ARCHIVAL COLLECTIONS

William Edwards Stephens Papers
1939-1980

UPT 50 S836

3.0 Cubic feet

Prepared by Timothy H. Horning

March 2014

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

PROVENANCE

The William Edwards Stephens papers were donated to the University Archives by Dr. Walter D. Wales, former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, in 1983 (accession number 87: 22). 

 

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ARRANGEMENT

The William Edwards Stephens papers are organized into five series – Research and Writings, Dean File, Teaching Material, Students’ Material, and Photographs – each of which are arranged alphabetically. 

 

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BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

William Edwards Stephens, noted nuclear physicist, was born in May 29, 1912 in St. Louis, Missouri. He received B.S. and M.A. degrees from St. Louis’ Washington University in 1932 and 1934, respectively and a Ph.D. from the California Institute of Technology in 1938. From 1938 to 1940 he served as Research Fellow at the Westinghouse Research Laboratories in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and from 1940 to 1941 he was an Instructor in Physics at Stanford University. 

In 1941 Dr. Stephens joined the University of Pennsylvania as an Instructor of Physics and was later promoted to Professor of Physics in 1948, a position he held until his death in 1980. From 1963 to 1969 he served as Chair of the Physics Department and from then as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences 1969 to 1974. Dr. Stephens authored many contributions to professional journals, including Physical Review and the Journal of American Physics, edited the textbook Nuclear Fission and Atomic Energy (1948), and, with President of the University of Pennsylvania Dr. Gaylord P. Harnwell, co-authored the textbook Atomic Physics: An Atomic Description of Physical Phenomena (1955). 

During World War II, Dr. Stephens participated in research on behalf of the Office of Scientific Research and Defense (OSRD), a government agency that coordinated scientific research for military purposes. His efforts earned him the Army-Navy Certificate of Merit. 

Dr. Stephens was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi, the American Institute of Physics, and the American Astronomical Society, as well as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Physical Society, and a founding member of the Association of Philadelphia Scientists, a group that was opposed to government interference in scientific research. He was also an avid yachtsman, having participated in several Newport (Rhode Island) to Bermuda races. 

 

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SCOPE and CONTENT

The papers of William Edwards Stephen are all professional in nature and document his involvement with the University of Pennsylvania as a Professor of Physics (1941-1980), Chair of the Physics Department (1963-1969), and Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences (1969-1974). This documentation includes research and notes pertaining to astrophysics and nuclear physics, notebooks and papers from students in his physics courses, working files pertaining to his appointment as dean, and a small amount of photographs and negatives associated with his research. 

 

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CONTROLLED ACCESS HEADINGS

Corporate Name(s)

  • University of Pennsylvania. Dept. of Physics.

Subject(s)

  • Nuclear physics--Study and teaching.
  • Physics--Study and teaching--Pennsylvania--Philadelphia.

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INVENTORY

 

Research and Writings 

Box

Folder

Aerodynamics of Sailing 1945 

1

1

Atomic Physics: An Atomic Description of Physical Phenomena, Harnwell, Gaylord P., and William E. Stephens. York, PA: The Maple Press Company 1955 

1

2

Betatron Therapy 1945-1950 

1

3

Burnout of S Band Video Crystals 1945 

1

4

Carbon Burning Nuclear Reactions 1974 

1

5

Carbon-Carbon Interactions 1968-1969 

1

6

Clippings: Fortune and Life magazines (1) 1945-1946 

1

7

Clippings: Fortune and Life magazines (2) 1945-1946 

1

8

Cloud Chamber n.d. 

1

9

Contact Potential Difference in Crystal Rectifiers 1946 

1

10

Cosmic Ray and Elementary Particles Group Technical Report 1960 

1

11

Cosmic Rays 1951-1955 

1

12

Crossed Field Velocity Filter 1979 

1

13

Crystal Rectifier 1945 

1

14

Crystals and Silicon Surfaces 1943-1948 

1

15

Effects of Tapping on Barrier Capacity 1943 

1

16

Electron Therapy 1940-1948 

1

17

Esso Laboratories 1950 

1

18

Evolution of the Universe manuscript 

(1) n.d. 

1

19

(2) n.d. 

1

20

(3) n.d. 

1

21

(4) n.d. 

1

22

Ferromagnetism, Radar, Solids 1939-1943 

1

23

Gold-Germanium Junctions as Particle Spectrometers 1959 

1

24

Haverford College Atomic Lab n.d. 

1

25

Heavy Elements in Monazite Crystals 1976 

1

26

High Energy Accelaration n.d. 

1

27

Hurliman, Doctor T. 1978 

1

28

Ion Gun 1947-1950 

1

29

Ionization Guage Circuit n.d. 

1

30

Isotopic Weights 1948 

1

31

Magnet Iron Test n.d. 

1

32

Mass Spectrometer 

Abstracts 1946 

1

33

Correspondence 1946-1954 

1

34

Grant 1944-1947 

1

35

Miscellaneous n.d. 

1

36

Parts 1947; n.d. 

1

37

Patents 1951-1952 

1

38

Miscellaneous 1976 

1

39

Miscellaneous 1977 

1

40

Miscellaneous 1978 

1

41

Miscellaneous 1980 

2

1

Miscellaneous n.d. 

2

2

Monazites 1976; n.d. 

2

3

Mossbauer Effect 1959-1960 

2

4

Neutron Therapy 1939-1946 

2

5

New Observations and Old Nucleocosmochronologies 1970 

2

6

Notecards n.d. 

2

7

Nuclear Models 1963-1964 

2

8

Nuclear Therapy 1943-1949; n.d. 

2

9

Nucleosynthesis 1972-1980 

2

10

Present Status of Semiconductor Particle Counters 1959 

2

11

Proposed Princeton-Pennsylvania Three-Billion Volt High Intensity Proton Synchrotron 1955 

2

12

Pulsar Talks 1969 

2

13

Pulsed Mass Spectrometer 1953; n.d. 

2

14

Radio Autographs n.d. 

2

15

Radioactive Detection of Aluminum in Silicon 1943 

2

16

Radioactive Tracers n.d. 

2

17

Recent Research on Silicon Rectifiers 1944 

2

18

Reprints 1939-1946 

2

19

Safety and Biological Effects of Radiation 1938-1954 

2

20

Search for Naturally Occuring Superheavy Element Z=110 and A=294 n.d. 

2

21

Semi-Conductors 1945-1946 

2

22

Shoe Fitting X-Ray Machines 1949 

2

23

Standard Oil Mass Spectrometer 1947-1948 

2

24

Standard Oil Mass Spectrometer 1949-1951 

2

25

Strain Gauge 1942 

2

26

Super-Heavy Elements 1969-1974 

2

27

Super-Heavy Elements 1974-1979 

2

28

Super-Heavy Elements n.d. 

2

29

Symposium on Mass Sprectroscopy in Physics Research 1951 

2

30

Thermister Bridges 1945 

2

31

Tracers and Interior Therapy 1946-1951 

2

32

Upper Limit for the Presence 1977 

2

33

Van de Graff's Accelerator 1941 

2

34

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Dean File 

Box

Folder

Correspondence 1973-1974 

2

35

Correspondence: Myerson, Martin 1972 

2

36

Correspondence: Stellar, Eliot 1973-1974 

2

37

Dean's Tables and Associated Information 1973 

2

38

Physics Department Annual Report to Dean 1974 

2

39

Planning Committee 1969-1974 

2

40

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Teaching Material 

Box

Folder

Ad-Hoc Committee on a Nuclear Engineering Program 1952-1953 

2

41

Graduate Lab 1950-1958 

2

42

Graduate Lab 1961 

2

43

Graduate Lab 1961-1962 

2

44

Leybold's Nuclear Track Plate n.d. 

2

45

Miscellaneous 1949-1954 

2

46

Miscellaneous 1958-1960 

2

47

Miscellaneous 1960; n.d. 

2

48

Nuclear Physics in Radiology 1943-1959 

3

1

Origin of the Elements 1969; n.d. 

3

2

Physics 241 1961-1962 

3

3

Physics 517 n.d. 

3

4

Physics 521 1947-1957 

3

5

Physics 521 1959 

3

6

Physics 521 1960 

3

7

Physics 522 1949 

3

8

Physics 522 1956-1960 

3

9

Physics 522 1960-1961 

3

10

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Students' Material 

Box

Folder

Notebook: Cho, K. S., Physics 521 and Physics 522 1957-1958 

3

11

Notebook: Cho, K. S., Physics 522 n.d. 

3

12

Notebook: Moses, Kenneth A., Physics 522 Lab Book 1956 

3

13

Papers 

Barash, Leonard, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance 1960 

3

14

Chun, Kee W., Transistor in Theory and Experiments 1952 

3

15

Horden, Joel H., Nuclear Resonance Fluorescence 1960 

3

16

John, Robert H., The Omegatron 1960 

3

17

Letson, George M., Einstein Relation and Mobility of Holes in N-type Germanium 1955 

3

18

Tessler, George, Beta-Ray Spectrometer 1959 

3

19

Toms, M. Elaine, Mesons 1951 

3

20

Wagner, Joseph, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance n.d. 

3

21

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Photographs 

Box

Folder

Cosmic Rays n.d. 

3

22

High-Power Atoms n.d. 

3

23

Negatives 1953 

3

24

Negatives n.d. 

3

25

Scientific Equipment 1947 

3

26

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