This spring, two locations were designated by the American Chemical Society as National Historic Chemical Landmarks. The Oesper Collections in the History of Chemistry at the University of Cincinnati was dedicated on March 15 and the Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory at Iowa State University was dedicated on May 17.
With 4,000 scientific artifacts, 28,000 books and journals, and 2,500 photos and prints, the Oesper Collection is one of the largest of its kind in the world. The collection was founded in 1986 by William B. Jensen, with an endowment from Ralph E. Oesper.
The designation at the Ames Laboratory recognizes a pure uranium-metal-production facility at Iowa State during World War II. “With this landmark designation, we pay tribute to the vision, determination, and sheer endurance of the scientists and other staff members who developed techniques to produce huge quantities of ultrapure uranium for the Manhattan Project,” says Lisa Balbes, member of the ACS Board of Directors. “This intensive mission advanced national security and contributed to the development of nuclear power.”
ACS established the National Historic Chemical Landmarks program in 1992 to recognize seminal events in the history of chemistry and to increase awareness of the contributions of chemistry to society.