About atomic history

Through government publications and other materials published previous to, and during the Cold War, this blog explores the atom in U.S. culture, including the subjects of atomic energy, weapons, and the nuclear fuel cycle. I became interested in these subjects while working with government publications as a former gov docs librarian and as a member of Sierra Club’s “old” Nuclear Waste Task Force.

I believe revisiting the “the age of the atom” is central to understanding current attitudes towards nuclear war, weapons testing, nonproliferation, risk perception, secrecy (of course), survivability after nuclear war, and that ideal state: a world without nuclear weapons, for we live in a “world where nuclear weapons can literally mean the end of history” (Cantelon, Hewlett, & Williams, The American Atom, 1991, p. 357).

As time permits, I’ll add historical documents related to atomic discourse, civil defense, shelters, radiation exposure, and their relationship to Cold War politics, language, and culture. If there are certain documents you’d like me to track down and post, let me know.

Note: I check copyright status before posting any documents; with some exceptions, however, there are docs where copyright and/or orphan work status can’t be fully verified. For the most part, docs posted on atomic history are copyright free, taxpayer supported U.S. government publications.

Susan (iecologie at yahoo dot com)