Karen Dorn Steele: It's April 29, 2019. Our first interview is with F. Robert Cook, a retired Nuclear Regulatory Commission overseer at Hanford Reservation. First, why don’t you tell us a little bit about your background—where you grew up and something about your early education?
Bob Cook is a nuclear engineer. He began his career by working with Naval Reactors and he helped create the structural design base for reactors, which later became the design basis for all nuclear power plants. From 1963 to 1988 he worked for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. He also worked as a consultant for the Yakama Nation.
Cindy Kelly: It is Wednesday, September 12, 2018. I’m in Seattle, Washington, and I have Jackie Peterson with me. My first question to her is to tell me her full name and spell it.
Jackie Peterson: My name is Jackie Peterson. It’s J-a-c-k-i-e Peterson, P-e-t-e-r-s-o-n.
Kelly: I’d love to know more about yourself and how you got involved in this. Maybe you could start by just giving a brief bio, where you were born and when.
Jackie Peterson is an independent curator and exhibit developer in Seattle, Washington. She curated an exhibition called “The Atomic Frontier: Black Life at Hanford” at the Northwest African American Museum from October 2015-March 2016. In this interview, Peterson describes the exhibition and what she learned about African American experiences at Hanford during the Manhattan Project. She explains how African Americans came to the Tri-Cities, the kinds of work they were able to obtain, and the (largely informal) segregation they faced.
Cindy Kelly: I’m Cindy Kelly, Atomic Heritage Foundation. It is Monday, September 10, 2018. I have with me Tom Marceau, and I’d like him to tell us his full name and spell it.
Thomas Marceau: Thomas E. Marceau. E is for Edward. M-a-r-c-e-a-u.
Kelly: Great. So, Tom, I’ve known you a long time, but there are things I don’t know about you. It would be great to have you tell us from the beginning when and where you were born, and then how you happened to become what you are today and so involved in Hanford and its history.
Thomas “Tom” Marceau is an archaeologist and cultural resources specialist at the Hanford site. In this interview, he discusses the geological history of the Hanford area and the Native American tribes that have lived in the area for thousands of years. He also highlights how the displacement of Native Americans have resulted in a cultural and historical crisis for these tribes, because their identities, lives, and communities revolve around the lands their ancestors inhabited.
Cindy Kelly: The next speaker is John Adams, who is a composer, as you all know, and composed most recently an opera about the Manhattan Project, “Doctor Atomic,” which opened in San Francisco last October . We are absolutely thrilled to have him here, as an artist who has grappled with the deeper meanings and expressed them most dramatically in music and in theater in this opera. I’d like to invite John to come and get wired up and begin.
John Adams: Thank you very much, thank you.
Nancy Bartlit: My name is Nancy R. Bartlit, B-A-R-T-L-I-T.
Cindy Kelly: Thank you. Why don’t we start with you telling us what is your role?
Bartlit: I’m president of the Los Alamos Historical Society, and I formerly was on the County Council. I have been in Los Alamos for more than forty years as a volunteer activist and environmentalist. I also was on the National Lung Association, so I’m kind of interested in many things.
Cindy Kelly: I’m Cindy Kelly. I’m in Santa Fe. It’s Monday, February 6, 2017, and I have with me Jenny Kimball. I would like her to first state her full name and spell it.
Jenny Kimball: Okay. It’s Jennifer Lea Kimball, K-I-M-B-A-L-L. My title is actually Chairman of the Board of the hotel.
Kelly: You might want to say the name of the hotel.
[Thanks to David Schiferl and Willie Atencio for recording this interview and providing a copy to the Atomic Heritage Foundation.]
Willie Atencio: Okay, Rosario, where were your grandparents from?