The collection documents the American Institute Science Laboratory and the students who conducted research in it.
Scope and Contents:
The collection includes a written history of the laboratory, photographs of students conducting experiments, lists of students, letters, resumes, descriptions of the students' research projects, a magazine, articles about the participants, and a report written by one of them on the subject of plastics. Also included are videocassettes of interviews of some former students in a film project titled Gifted Children.
Collection is arranged into one series.
Biographical / Historical:
The American Institute Science Laboratory, grew out of the Westinghouse Pavilion at the 1939 World's Fair, when the "Junior Hall of Science" was moved to an IBM lab on 5th Avenue in New York. Thomas J. Watson of IBM approved it and Dr. Henry Platt ran it. It enabled young aspiring scientists (aged 13-15) to conduct their own laboratory research during after school hours and weekends. Between 30 and 40 students participated, many of them later describing the experience as one of the highlights of their lives. Most went on to have distinguished careers in science and medicine. It closed after 18 months due to World War II. A later iteration of it was started in Boston in 1998, and was named for Henry Platt.
Collection donated by Irving Arias, 2016.
Collection is open for research. Social Security numbers are present and have been rendered unreadable and redacted. Researchers may use the photocopies in the collection. The remainder of the collection has no restrictions.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.