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History of science, technology & medicine

Royal Society

The Royal Society (Great Britain) is the oldest scientific association still in existence, and its records are a valuable source for the history of science in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Early letters and classified papers, 1660-1740 [microform]
Microfilm 06951 23 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Q41.L85 R692 1992
Consists of letters sent to the Society by British and foreign correspondents, who reported news, discoveries and experiments. The classified papers are more substantive reports submitted to the Society, only some of which were published in the Society's journal, Philosophical Transactions.

Journal books of scientific meetings, 1660-1680 [microform]
Microfilm 05668 18 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Q41.L85R69
The Journal books record the business of the Society's regular meetings, at which papers were read and discussed.

Council minutes, 1660-1800 [microform]
Microfilm 08164 3 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Q41.L85R69
The Council minutes record the administrative business of the Society .

Miscellaneous manuscripts [microform]
Microfilm 08165 10 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Q41.L85R69
As the title suggests, this consists of an assortment of letters and papers that document contributions to the history of science.

Other scientific organizations

Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. Minutes and correspondence, 1812-1925
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries. See Borrowing Microforms from the Center for Research Libraries for more information.
Papers of the Academy from its founding date through 1924. Includes minutes (1812–1925), correspondence received (1812–1924), correspondence sent (1814–76), summaries of archival collections, memberships (1812–1924), nominations for membership (1812–1924), and donations (1812–1924).

Archives of the Royal College of Physicians, 1518-1915 [microform]
Microfiche 1510 1352 microfiches
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms R35.R69 A66
The RCP is the oldest medical society in England. The Annals are the official record of the proceedings of the College and directly document the College as an institution; indirectly, they document many aspects of medical practice from the time of the founding to the present. Also includes Council Minutes, 1836-1978.

Astronomers Royal Records, 1675-1764
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries. See Borrowing Microforms from the Center for Research Libraries for more information.
These records are in the Public Record Office of Great Britain, the Royal Greenwich Observatory (Great Britain. PRO.RGO/1-135.) The microfilm set contains the papers of the first three Astronomers Royal: John Flamsteed, 1675-1719; Edmond Halley, 1720-1742; James Bradley, 1742-1762. Also included are a small number of the papers of Nathaniel Bliss, 1762-1764. The records are observation and computation books, star catalogs, notes and private and official correspondence.

Franklin Institute and the making of industrial America [microform]
Microfiche 414 536 microfiche
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms T1.F83F72
The Franklin Institute was formed in 1824 to promote the "mechanic arts" of the industrial revolution. This collection consists of selected material, chosen to illustrate the activities of the Institute, which included scientific experiments, investigations of new inventions, and educational programs including exhibitions. Most of the material dates from the 19th century.

Records of the Committee on Science and the Arts of The Franklin Institute, 1824-1900
Microfilm 01800 28 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms T1.F84xM23
Reports from the Franklin Institute committee that evaluated inventions. Covers a wide range of topics including electricity, the telegraph, agricultural and industrial equipment, and household appliances.

Lowell Observatory archives [microform]
Microfilm 04517 10 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms QB82.U5 xL2
Consists of correspondence from 1894 to 1916.

Papers of the President's Science Advisory Committee, 1957-1961 [microform]
Microfilm 06174 3 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Q127.U6 U492
Records of the PSAC, which advised President Eisenhower about national security, the research agenda, and the space program.