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Department of Physics Records, 1909-1974

Collection Overview

Title: Department of Physics Records, 1909-1974

ID: RG 037

Primary Creator: Oregon State University. Department of Physics

Extent: 12.0 cubic feet

Arrangement: Organized into two series for the microfilm records: 1. General Correspondence and 2. College Radio Development and Administration; and five series for the paper records: 1. Correspondence; 2. Curriculum Policies/Procedures; 3. Research Proposals, Renewals, and Final Reports; 4. Minutes; and 5. Lectures and Informational Materials.

Languages of Materials: English [eng]


The Department of Physics Records document physics research and teaching at Oregon State University as well as the KOAC radio station which was established and initially housed within the department. The records include correspondence, project reports, faculty research, curriculum materials, and documents pertaining to the functioning of the department.

Scope and Content Notes

Given differences in the series designations and date ranges between the paper and microfilm records in this group, the microfilm reels are described separately below and in the inventory.

General correspondence on microfilm consists of reports to the President's Office and letters and memoranda pertaining to research projects, equipment, professional organizations, general administrative operations, and the Photo Services Unit. Series II on microfilm consists of materials pertaining to KOAC radio licenses and applications, equipment, budget, and radio talks by department members.

In the paper records, Series I consists largely of correspondence covering the years 1969 to 1974, picking up where the microfilm records end and pertaining to department faculty, research equipment and facilities, and administrative matters with other OSU departments and colleges. Series II contains correspondence, memoranda, and blank forms covering the years 1957 to 1973 and pertains to procedural guidelines for curriculum development and instruction. Series III consists of proposals for scientific research, renewal requests for approved research projects, and final reports dating from 1966 to 1974. Series IV consists of minutes from Physics Dept. staff and graduate student meetings. Series V primarily consists of flyers for seminar presentations and lectures by professors and researchers from OSU and other universities.

Biographical / Historical Notes

The Department of Physics was established in 1908 with Dr. Willibald Weniger hired as Assistant Professor to teach the four courses offered in physics. Prior to 1908, courses on physics were offered by several different academic departments including the Department of Chemistry, Physics, Geology, and Minerology, and the Department of Physics, History, and Latin. Initially housed in Apperson Hall, the department relocated to the newly constructed Covell Hall in 1928 and moved again in 1962 to the Physics-Chemistry Building (now Weniger Hall). Expanding the number and range of classes after 1908 to eventually form the core of an undergraduate degree program, the department began to offer graduate-level courses in physics in 1926.

Administrative Information

Related Materials: The Physics Department Photographs (P 078) consist primarily of images of the construction of Weniger Hall. The Special Collections and Archives Research Center holdings also include the personal papers of two Physics Department faculty members: the David B. Nicodemus Papers (MSS Nicodemus), Willibald Weniger Papers (MSS Weniger), and the Willibald Weniger Photographic Collection (P 081). The KOAC Records (RG 015) include more extensive materials pertaining to the establishment and functioning of KOAC radio. The College of Science Records (RG 024) contain reports and other materials pertaining to the Physics Department.

Preferred Citation: Department of Physics Records (RG 037), Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center, Corvallis, Oregon.

Other URL: A preliminary container list was created for this collection on or before Decemeber 11, 2015.


Oregon State University. Department of Physics

People, Places, and Topics

KOAC (Radio station : Corvallis, Or.)
Oregon State University. Department of Physics
Physics--Study and teaching (Higher)
Radio in higher education--Oregon--Corvallis.
Radio stations--Oregon.

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