Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum


William T. Golden Papers

Dates: 1949-1990.

Science Advisor to the President, 1950-1951.

The papers of William T. Golden consist of correspondence, memoranda, and printed material concerning Golden’s work as Science Advisor to the President and the early years of the President’s Science Advisory Committee.

[Administrative Information | Biographical Sketch | Collection Description | Series Descriptions | Folder Title List]


ADMINISTRATIVE INFORMATION

Size: Less than one linear foot (about 500 pages).
Access: Open.
Copyright: The donor retained his copyright interest in these papers.
Processed by: Erwin J. Mueller (1987); Christina N. Golding (2009).


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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

1909 (25 October)Born, New York City
1930A.B, University of Pennsylvania
1930-1931Attended Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration
1941-1945Served in U.S. Navy, rising to rank of Lt. Commander
1946-1950Assistant to Admiral Lewis Strauss, Atomic Energy Commission
1950-1951Science Advisor to the President and the Director of the Bureau of the Budget
1950-1958Consultant to the Atomic Energy Commission
1980Edited Science Advice to the President (New York, Pergamon Press)
2007 (October 9)Died, New York City

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COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

The William T. Golden Papers are comprised of correspondence, memoranda, and printed material documenting William T. Golden’s activities as the unofficial Science Advisor to President Harry S. Truman and his involvement with the President’s Science Advisory Committee, which was established in its earliest form in 1951.

William T. Golden is considered a pioneer of post-World War II science policy because of his service as an advisor to President Truman from 1950 to 1951. During this time Mr. Golden offered advice to President Truman on how the country could most effectively mobilize its scientific resources in the context of the Korean War. He developed an advisory system to guide Presidential decisions on key scientific issues. Golden’s work helped lead to the creation of the official position of Science Advisor to the President and of the President’s Science Advisory Committee.

Golden’s papers include a lengthy report entitled “Government Military – Scientific Research,” which is comprised mostly of memoranda written by Golden during his service as Truman’s Science Advisor. Some of these memoranda have been published in a book edited by William A. Blanpied, Impacts of the Early Cold War on the Formulation of U.S. Science Policy (Washington: American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1995).

The collection also includes printed material relating to government science policy, and a letter written by Golden to Admiral Lewis Strauss of the Atomic Energy Commission in 1949, concerning the President’s announcement that the Soviet Union had exploded an atomic bomb.

Related materials at the Truman Library include Official File 192 (Science) in the Harry S. Truman Papers.

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SERIES DESCRIPTIONS

Container Nos. Series
1 SUBJECT FILE, 1949-1990
Correspondence, memoranda, and printed material. Arranged alphabetically.

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FOLDER TITLE LIST

Box 1
  • Correspondence and Memoranda
  • “Government Military Scientific Research –Review for the President of the United States”
      [1 of 3]
      [2 of 3]
      [3 of 3]
  • Science Advice to the President – Edited by William T. Golden

[ Top of the page | Administrative Information | Biographical Sketch | Collection Description | Series Descriptions | Folder Title List ]