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Silvanus Thompson Letters

 Collection
Identifier: MS-1143

This collection contains two letters written in 1897 and some handwritten notes from Professor Silvanus Thompson. The letters are addressed to Professor Wilhelm Röntgen and largely concern Thompson's involvement with the Röntgen Society of London. The handwritten notes include a timeline of various scientific events and discoveries. In the first letter, dated August 1897, Thompson discusses the newly-formed society dedicated to the study of X-rays, the Röntgen Society of London. The society had elected Röntgen as the first honorary member, and Thompson writes to ask if the society can write Röntgen's name on the society roster. In the second letter, dated October 22, 1897, Thompson writes to Röntgen as the recently-elected president of the Röntgen Society of London and encloses the official acceptance letter of Röntgen into the society. Furthermore, he invites Röntgen to the society's next general meeting in November. Thompson offers Röntgen a place in his home if Röntgen were to travel to London for the meeting. In addition, Thompson asks if Röntgen could send some of his equipment used to detect X-rays should he not be able to come to the meeting. In addition to the two letters, there is also a handwritten timeline of scientific discoveries, presumably written by Thompson. Dates range from 1897 to 1930.

Dates

  • 1897 August-October 22, undated

Language

The material in this collection is in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.

Extent

0.1 Linear Feet (1 folder)

Abstract

This collection contains two letters written in 1897 and some handwritten notes from Professor Silvanus Thompson. The letters are addressed to Professor Wilhelm Röntgen and largely concern Thompson's involvement with the Röntgen Society of London. The handwritten notes includes a timeline of various scientific events and discoveries.

Biographical/Historical Note

Silvanus Phillips Thompson was born in 1851 to a family of Quakers. A physics professor at the City and Guilds Technical College in Finsbury, England, Thompson is known for his work in electrical engineering as well as his published textbook, Calculus Made Easy. He was the president of the Röntgen Society of London, a society that studied a new type of light waves which Professor Wilhelm Röntgen discovered and called "X-rays." Thompson died in 1916.

Wilhelm Röntgen, born in 1845, was a physicist from Germany who attended the University of Zurich. He produced and detected X-rays in 1895. For this achievement, he won the first Nobel Peace Prize in Physics in 1901. He donated the money from this prize to the University of Wurzburg. Furthermore, Röntgen took the first picture of an X-ray: an image of his wife's hand. He died in 1923.

Arrangement

This collection is in one folder.

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

Contact:
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA
865-974-4480