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History of science, technology & medicine

History of science in Princeton's Special Collections

Special Collections: Guide to Topics: Science, History of

There are many collections of interest to historians of science in Princeton's University Archives and in the Public Policy Papers. These include the records of departments (e.g. Chemistry, Computer Science) and also the papers of some individual scientists who were affiliated with Princeton. The library catalog and the finding aids are the best guide to these resources:

Note that the Institute for Advanced Study is not affiliated with the University and their records are in their own archives.

Einstein's papers are, for the most part, not at Princeton. See

Topical collections

Manhattan project [microform]: offical history and documents
Microfilm 04568 12 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms QC773.A1xG8.
A detailed history of the project, published by the National Archives in 1976 and based on materials in their collections. Also includes reports on the results of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings.

Revolution industrielle française, 1810-1870 [microform]: statistiques, enquêtes, expositions, documents
MICROFICHE 916 531 microfiches
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Z7164.O7R48
Microform collection of books on the economy, expositions, and government studies of industry in France in the 19th century. In French.

Sex & sexuality, 1640-1940 [microform]: literary, medical and sociological perspectives
Microfilm 11955 15 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms HQ21 .S47 1998
A collection of books and pamphlets on sex, gynecology and prostitution, from the Bodleian Library at Oxford and the Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine. See the online guide at

Trade catalogues at Winterthur [microform]
Microfiche 809 ca. 3000 microfiches
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Z7164.M18H43 1984
Microform edition of 19th and early 20th century American trade catalogues from the collections of the Winterthur Museum.

Nineteenth Century Collections Online: Science, Technology and Medicine: 1780-1925 "This archive covers every aspect of nineteenth-century science: electricity and electromagnetism, mathematics and engineering, astronomy and astrophysics, color theory and the theory of natural selection, geology and mineralogy, chemistry and medicine." 

Nineteenth Century Collections Online: Photography -- the World through the Lens  Assembles collections of photographs, photograph albums, photographically illustrated books and texts on the early history of photography from libraries and archives from across the globe.

World's Fairs and Expositions: Visions of Tomorrow (Smithsonian Collections Online) Materials published between 1834-1940. Includes Books of the Fairs: Smithsonian Libraries holdings; world's fairs titles in the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology and in the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Library.

Trade Literature and the Merchandizing of Industry (Smithsonian Collections Online) Collection covers 1820-1926 and includes National Museum of American History Library Trade Literature Collection.

Women and medicine [microform]: remedy books, 1533-1865
RECAP Microfilm 11860 35 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms RS131.28 .W66 2004
Consists of about 260 manuscript recipe books compiled by women, from the collections of the Wellcome Library for the History and Understanding of Medicine, London. The books contain cookery, medical, and miscellaneous household recipes.

In Response to the AIDS Crisis: Records of the National Commission on Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, 1983-1994 Archives Unbound
"Briefing books, hearing and meeting transcripts, reports, and press clippings document the activities of the National Commission on Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome from 1983-1994." From the National Library of Medicine.

Aeronautics and Space Reports to the Congress, 1958-1964 History Vault

Associated Press: Cape Canaveral Bureau Records, 1959-2000 History Vault

Environmental Protection Agency, Records on Automobile Emission Standards History Vault

Environmental Protection Agency, Records on the Health and Ecological Effects of Pollution, 1971-1977 History Vault

Environmental Protection Agency: Records of the U.S./USSR Joint Commission on Environmental Programs, 1972-1976 History Vault

The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990: Reduction of Acid Rain, Urban Air Pollution, and Environmental Policy Archives Unbound "The 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments were a landmark effort to reduce air pollution through a variety of instruments including the use of a market-based system of trade-able pollution "permits" under its Title IV and Title V. This Archives Unbound collection consists of essential documents on the promulgation and implementation of the Clean Air Act Amendments (CAAA) of 1990 and other environmental issues including endangered species and protection of American wetlands. Source Library: George H.W. Bush Presidential Library"

Dissertations read to the Royal Medical Society, Edinburgh British Online Archives "Founded in 1737, this is the oldest student society of its kind in the United Kingdom, whose members were duty-bound to deliver a dissertation for examination by their peers. This collection comprises over 200 volumes of hand-written dissertations, providing a unique insight into the development in medical teaching and thought during the last 250 years. In subject, the dissertations range from framboesia to fear, from meningitis to mongolism and many represent the earliest original work of famous men of medicine. Scanned from the microfilm of the Royal Medical Society collections in the Edinburgh University Library."

Book collections and indexes

Landmarks of Science
Microfilm S01063; Microfiche 930; and Micro-print I and II
This very large microform set reproduces many of the key works of science from the late 15th century through the early 20th. Landmarks I contains monographs, and Landmarks II contains both monographs and scientific journals. Though the microprint format is mildly inconvenient to use, this is a key source. All individual titles are listed in the Main Catalog. For a complete list of the titles in the set, do a keyword search in the Main Catalog for "landmarks of science."

Alphabetischer Katalog [microform]: Erscheinungszeitraum, 15. Jahrhundert-1976
Microfiche 158 313 microfiches
Printed guide: none
Bibliothek des Deutschen Museums München.

Early American medical imprints, 1668-1820 [microfilm]
Microfilm 10544 105 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms R128.7 .A452 1981
Microfilm of works listed in Robert B. Austin's bibliography, Early American medical imprints: a guide to works printed in the United States, 1668-1820 Annex A, Forrestal (TEMP): Z6661.U5 A44.

Histoire des sciences, XVIIe-XIXe siècles [microform]: mathématiques, physique, chimie, minéralogie, géologie, sciences de la nature
Microfiche 1093 368 microfiches
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Z7405.H6 H65
Microform edition of works on science published in the late 18th and 19th centuries. Most material is in French.

[Rare and out-of-print books from the Vatican Library]
Microfilm 11644 1105 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms Z1033.M5 S26
Incunabula and rare books from the Vatican Film Library, Saint Louis University. Collections are arranged topically and include a substantial amount of material in history of science and medicine. It is necessary to use the mimeographed handlists to identify works of interest.

[Russian Academy of Sciences]
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries. See Borrowing Microforms from the Center for Research Libraries for more information.
The Center for Research Libraries has an extensive collection of the publications of the Russian Academy of Sciences from its founding in 1723 to 1956; these include serials and monographs. The titles are cataloged individually in the CRL catalog.

Schlagwortkatalog [microform]
Microfiche 161 299 microfiches
Printed guide: none
Bibliothek des Destschen Museums München. Reproduction of catalog cards.