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George de Hevesy Papers

 Collection
Identifier: MS-0844

This collection houses correspondence, laboratory notebooks, and bound reprints documenting the life and career of Nobel Prize winning chemist George de Hevesy.

Dates

  • 1908-1965

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

4 Linear Feet

Abstract

This collection houses correspondence, laboratory notebooks, and bound reprints documenting the life and career of Nobel Prize winning chemist George de Hevesy.

Biographical/Historical Note

George de Hevesy (also spelled Georg von Hevesy) was born in Budapest, Hungary on August 1, 1885. He earned his PhD degree from the University of Freiburg im Breisgau in 1908. He traveled to England to study under world famous physicist Ernest Rutherford in 1910 and began working at the Vienna Institute of Radium Research in 1913, where he and Frederic Paneth conducted the first radioactive tracer experiment. de Hevesy's career was interrupted in 1915 when he was drafted into the Austro-Hungarian Army. After the end of the war, he worked briefly at the University of Budapest before traveling to Copenhagen, Denmark in 1920 to work with Neils Bohr. While in Copenhagen, de Hevesy and his colleague Dirk Coster discovered the element hafnium, and de Hevesy performed pioneering work with isotopic indicators and the clinical use of isotopes.

In 1930, de Hevesy traveled to the United States to take the position of Baker Lecturer at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He returned to Copenhagen in 1934 and renewed his association with Neils Bohr's Institute, which he maintained until 1952. During his second stay in Denmark, de Hevesy demonstrated the formation of artificial radioactive isotopes and began studying the effect of radiation on living cells. In 1943, de Hevesy moved to Stockholm and began working with the Institute of Research in Organic Chemistry. In the same year, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work on the use of isotopes as tracers in the study of chemical processes. de Hevesy died on July 5, 1966.

Arrangement

Collection consists of four boxes divided into three series:

Missing Title

  1. Series I: Correspondence
  2. Series II: Laboratory Notebooks
  3. Series III: Bound Reprints

Acquisition Note

This collection is property of the University of Tennessee Libraries, Knoxville, Special Collections.

Repository Details

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

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