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Full listing > Accession MC2007/91
Accession #MC2007/91
TopicWeimer, Harry,
TitleHarry Weimer Family Collection
LocationPhoto Box 198 - space restrictions invoked creativity when placing boxes. Search in Unit #7, IS.
CitationHarry Weimer Family Collection, MC2007/91, Archives and Church of the Brethren Collection, Funderburg Library, Manchester University, North Manchester, Indiana.
AccessResearchers are responsible for determining copyright status of archived materials where this is relevant to their intended use of the materials.
ProvenanceRobert A. Weimer, son of Dr. Hary Weimer.
Scope and Content

Harry Weimer family collection including family reunion and class reunion photos of Mrs. Harry Weimer.

1.  Copy of Manchester College Class Reunion 1927 photo taken 23 May 1987 with Orpha Jackson Weimer.

2.  Two color photos from the Weimer Family Reunion, August 2005 at Manchester College.  Family members met in the Union and walked to new Science Center for a tour.  Emphasis was placed on the wing named in honor of Harry Weimer.  The tour was arranged by Robert A. Weimer. 

3.  Faculty photo from 1939 Aurora.

4.  Postcard of "Hall of Science."

5.  Photo of Don Martin and Dr. Carl Holl.

6.  Photo of MC Class of 1929 reunion featuring Harry Weimer and Orpha Jackson Weimer.

7.  Program from "'Science and Tomorrow' a Conference in Conjunction with the Dedication of the Hall of Science, Manchester College, 24 - 25 March, 1960."

8.  Photo of Don martin speaking at Dr. Holl's 25th in Shellar Hotel, M.C.

9.  Photo of Dr. Holl's 25th teaching anniversary.  Held at Shellar Hotel.

10. Manchester Graduating Class of 1927 at 50 year Reunion in 1977 featuring Orpha J. Weimer.

11.  Mason "Resolutions of Respect" in memory of Harry R. Weimer.

Date of Accession07 May 2007
Bio History Note

Dr. Weimer served in the Natural Sciences Division at Manchester College and while still on the faculty at Manchester went  to do chemical research for  the Monsanto Chemical company in Dayton, Ohio.  This was 1943 and the era of Hitler and the Second World War.  The Nazis were thought to be developing an atomic bomb and the United States wanted to build an atomic weapon before Germany or Japan was able to do so. The Manhattan Engineer District (later known as the Manhattan Project) was organized in June of 1942 for this purpose.  Monsanto Chemical Company in Dayton, Ohio was one of the participates. Forty years later Mrs. Weimer recollected, "Harry received still another call...Would you participate in a government-sponsored program involving a totally new field of science with no questions asked or answers given?"   Polonium-210 was the heart of a device placed inside the atomic bomb to "initiate" the chain reaction.  It was essentially the trigger that started the explosion.  The trigger for the atom bomb was invented and fabricated in Dayton, by the scientists of the Dayton project.

As the project neared completion Dr. Weimer became more disturbed.  He once came home "and  literally walked the floor all night long.  Exhausted by morning he picked up a cup of coffee and remarked, 'We have succeeded, but I wish to God we hadn't. It's awful, but it has to be.'"  He resigned the Project.  He was invited to White Sands to observe the test of the atom bomb using the trigger, but he didn't go.  He was invited to Bikini to see another test and he didn't go.

In March of 1945 the trustees promoted Weimer to full professor and it was announced that "he will return to teach in the department next year." Harry did return to Manchester to teach after a two year leave of absence.  He wanted others to know about what he had helped develop.  Without revealing technical secrets, within a month after school began in 1945 he spoke to the Science Club on "The History and Development of the Atomic Bomb." 

(from William Eberly's book, The Story of the Natural Sciences at Manchester College, pg., 90 - 92)

Harry Weimer died December 15, 1970.

Archivist Note

Description prepared 07 May 2007 by Jeanine M. Wine and last updated 07 May 2007 by Jeanine M. Wine.


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