The Wellcome Library announced the launch of an important new digital collection yesterday. Codebreakers: makers of modern genetics brings together the papers and archives of twenty leading researchers and organizations in biochemistry and genetics, including the personal papers of James Watson and Francis Crick, two scientists credited with discovering the double-helix structure of the DNA molecule in 1953.
Lots of other archival material provides the context for this discovery. From the Wellcome Library blog:
We also have collections that help place their work in a broader context. From the first half of the 20th century we have the archive of the Eugenics Society, made available by kind permission of the Council of the Galton Institute, and the papers of J B S Haldane, a leading figure in pre-war British science and the first Professor of Genetics at University College London. From the post-war period we have, amongst others, the collections of Guido Pontecorvo and his students Malcolm Ferguson-Smith and James Renwick, who helped make Glasgow a leading centre for the study of medical genetics. We’ve also digitised over a thousand books covering the science, history and social and cultural aspects of genetics and related disciplines, mostly from the 20th century.
Have you had a chance to look through this collection yet? What did you think?