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Theodor Rosebury Papers 1919-2006
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Collection Scope and Content Note


Professional and personal correspondence, lecture notes and examinations, writings and drafts, subject files and clippings, and documentation of his involvement with the Pugwash Conferences on Science & World Affairs illuminate Theodor Rosebury's professional life as a professor of dentistry, bacteriologist, author of popular books relating to medicine, and conscientious citizen.

Series 1, Personal and Biographical, contains correspondence, lecture notes, writings, photographs, and awards generated and received during Dr. Rosebury's lifetime. Notes and writings illustrate interests and studies both in high school and at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dentistry. A research trip to Alaska to study dental aspects of native Alaskans (1936) is described through correspondence and itineraries. Correspondence and orders give context to Rosebury's research into bacterial warfare for the U.S. Army at Fort Detrick during World War II. Other correspondence sheds light on Rosebury's family, their interests and activities.

Series 2, Correspondence, is almost entirely devoted to Dr. Rosebury's professional work both as a professor of dentistry and his involvement with national dental associations. William J. Gies, Samuel M. Gordon, John B. MacDonald, and Isaac Schaur are prominently represented. Substantial files detail his interactions with publishers McGraw-Hill and the Viking Press while preparing works for publication.

Series 3, Subject files, largely represent information gathered in support of his writing interests and include some articles, outlines, notes, and drafts by Dr. Rosebury. Correspondence with Cyrus Eaton, drafts of speeches, and conference schedules and proceedings describe Rosebury’s involvement (1957-1976) with the Pugwash Conferences.

Series 4, Lectures and Notebooks, consist of lecture notes, laboratory manuals, and examinations for courses Dr. Rosebury taught on general and oral bacteriology as they relate to dentistry. This material covers his tenures at Columbia University (1936-1951) and Washington University (1951-1965).

Series 5, Writings, contains outlines, notes, drafts, and correspondence relating to both Dr. Rosebury's articles about bacterial and biological warfare and his post-retirement books on microbes and venereal disease written for a popular audience. The former includes published editions of Peace or Pestilence (1949). The latter extensively details the production and publication of Life on Man (1969) and Microbes and Morals (1971). Included are book reviews, clippings, and information about book promotion tours. Lastly are drafts of apparently unpublished works, "Five Morbid Pieces" and "The Primal Prejudice."

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