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Register of the Sidney D. Drell papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Accruals
  • Related Materials
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Title: Sidney D. Drell papers
    Date (inclusive): 1945-2015
    Collection Number: 80074
    Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Archives
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 27 manuscript boxes, 1 oversize folder (11.4 linear feet)
    Abstract: Speeches and writings, notes, correspondence, memoranda, reports, studies, and printed matter relating to scientific and technological aspects of United States national security and intelligence issues, including nuclear weapons, nuclear stockpile management, satellite reconnaissance, biological and chemical warfare issues, and terrorism issues. Also includes material relating to the dissident Soviet physicist Andreĭ Sakharov, and to efforts on his behalf by Western scientists. Includes writings and letters by Sakharov.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Creator: Drell, Sidney D. (Sidney David), 1926-2016.


    Collection is open for research.
    The Hoover Institution Archives only allows access to copies of audiovisual items. To listen to sound recordings or to view videos or films during your visit, please contact the Archives at least two working days before your arrival. We will then advise you of the accessibility of the material you wish to see or hear. Please note that not all audiovisual material is immediately accessible.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Sidney D. Drell papers, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1980, with increments received in 1981 and 2016.


    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at http://searchworks.stanford.edu/ . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the online catalog is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

    Related Materials

    Sidney D. Drell papers, Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) Archives and History Office
    Scientists for Sakharov, Orlov, and Shcharansky records, Hoover Institution Archives
    Paul J. Flory papers, Hoover Institution Archives
    William Shockley miscellaneous papers, Hoover Institution Archives

    Biographical Note

    1926 Born, Atlantic City, New Jersey
    1946 A.B. in Physics, Princeton University
    1947 M.A. in Physics, University of Illinois
    1949 Ph.D. in Physics, University of Illinois
    1966 Member, President's Science Advisory Committee
    1969 Elected to the National Academy of Sciences
    1969-1981 Consultant, U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency
    1969-1986 Executive Head, Theoretical Physics, Stanford Linear Accelerator Center
    1974 First met Andrei Sakharov in Moscow
    1977 Accepted the Joseph Human Rights Award for Sakharov
    1977-1990 Member, American Committee on U.S.-Soviet Relations (formerly Committee on East-West Accord)
    1980 Advisory Board, Andrei Sakharov Defense Campaign
    1981 Chairman, International Conference in Honor of Andrei Sakharov
    1983-1989 Founding Co-Director, Stanford's Center for International Security and Arms Control
    1984 Prize Fellowship of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
    1986 President, American Physical Society
    1989-1996 Adjunct Professor, Department of Engineering and Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University
    1990-1991 Chairman, House Armed Services Committee Panel on Nuclear Weapons Safety
    1992-2001 Member, President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board
    1995 Chair, JASON Study for Department of Energy on Nuclear Testings
    1998 Retired as deputy director from Stanford Linear Accelerator Center
    1998-2016 Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution
    2000 Received Enrico Fermi Award
    2006 With George Shultz, initiated a program at the Hoover Institution to develop practical steps towards achieving a world without nuclear weapons
    2013 Awarded National Medal of Honor
    2016 Died
    Source: http://www.hoover.org/profiles/sidney-d-drell

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Sidney D. Drell papers include speeches and writings, notes, correspondence, memoranda, reports, studies, and printed matter related to scientific and technological aspects of United States national security and intelligence issues, including nuclear weapons, nuclear stockpile management, satellite reconnaissance, biological and chemical warfare issues, and terrorism issues. In addition, the papers include material related to the dissident Soviet physicist Andrei Sakharov, and to efforts on his behalf by Western scientists.
    These latter records document Drell's efforts to aid Andrei Sakharov during Sakharov's arrest and exile, as well as his personal relationship with Sakharov and Elena (Yelena) Bonner. The Andrei Sakharov Chronological File includes correspondence with Sakharov and family members such as Elena Bonner, Tat'iana Yankelevich (Bonner's daughter and Sakharov's step-daughter), and Tat'iana's husband Efrem Yankelevich. Letters to scientists and members of various organizations document Drell's efforts to arrange petitions, plan conferences, and disseminate information about Sakharov's work and exile in Gor'kii (Gorky). The series includes open letters between Drell and Sakharov discussing topics such as Sakharov's arrest and arms control. Also included are writings and typescripts by Drell and Sakharov. Material concerning the Andrei Sakharov Institute can also be found in this series.
    In 1981, Drell was the chairman of the International Conference in Honor of Andrei Sakharov, a birthday tribute to Sakharov designed to recognize his scientific contributions as well as express support for him. The Andrei Sakharov Collected Materials and Andrei Sakharov Chronological File contain correspondence and conference materials related to this event.
    The Speeches and Writings series includes typescripts, manuscripts, and clippings written by Drell and Sakharov. Writings by Sakharov include physics papers (with typescripts in Russian), interviews with Sakharov, articles describing Sakharov's views on human rights, and descriptions of his experience in exile. For more writings by Drell, see also Incremental Speeches and Writings.
    In addition to his work as a physicist, Drell was an arms control specialist. He advised the United States government on technical national security and defense issues and consulted for Los Alamos National Laboratory and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. He served on various advisory committees, including the President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. The Advisory Work File documents Drell’s consulting work through his research files, correspondence, and writings. Included are documents concerning the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the Stockpile Stewardship Program.
    Drell was a founding member of JASON, an independent group of scientists formed to advise the United States government. The JASON File includes documentation related to meetings, such as the annual summer study, as well as many reports for which Drell served as chair, study leader, or a contributor. Topics of reports include stockpile stewardship, nuclear testing, tritium, subcritical experiments, lasers, and stockpile aging. Although most reports are in their final form, these materials include some drafts and notes.
    The collection includes Printed Matter related to topics such as Sakharov, nuclear weapons, and intelligence, as well as histories compiled by the National Reconnaissance Office.
    Finally, the Audiovisual Material series contains sound recordings of the conference "Implications of the Reykjavik Summit on Its Twentieth Anniversary," as well as a photograph, and a videorecording about Sakharov.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Nuclear weapons.
    Biological warfare.
    Chemical warfare.
    Intelligence service--United States.
    United States--Defenses.
    Science--United States.
    Dissenters--Soviet Union.
    Sakharov, Andreĭ, 1921-1989.
    Civil rights--Soviet Union.
    Scientists--Soviet Union.