The Manhattan Project

In partnership with the National Museum of Nuclear Science & HistoryNational Museum of Nuclear Science & History

General Leslie Groves

Benjamin Bederson's Interview

Benjamin Bederson: I’m Benjamin Bederson.

Cindy Kelly: Can you spell it?

Bederson: B-E-D-E-R-S-O-N. Sometimes it’s called “Bederson.” I say Bederson. 

Kelly: And what was your birth date?

Bederson: I was born November 15, 1921. I'm about to have my 90th birthday next month.

Kelly: You are phenomenal. This man looks like he's sixty-five.

William J. Wilcox, Jr.'s Interview (2006)

William J. Wilcox, Jr.: My name is Bill Wilcox. Oak Ridge, Tennessee resident for sixty-three years. Ever since—pretty much since the beginning of Oak Ridge. Can’t imagine a better calling, a better career, a better place to live, better people to work for, better people to work with, or to be associated with. Very important contribution to our country that I was privileged to have a very tiny, small part of. It was great.

Eleanor Roensch's Interview

Theresa Strottman: It’s Saturday March 21, 1992, and it’s approximately 10:20 in the morning.  We are speaking with Jerry Roensch.  We thank you so much for coming this morning.

Eleanor (Jerry) Roensch: My pleasure.

Strottman: To start off the interview, I wonder if you could briefly tell me when and where you were born and a little something about your early education and training.

Ben Diven's Interview

Ben Diven: All right. I’m Ben Diven. That’s spelled D-I-V-E-N. I was born and raised in northern California, and I went to school in my hometown of Chico, and fortunately there was a state college there so I could start college in my hometown. I took the two and a half years of physics and mathematics that they taught there. And then, after a break of a couple years to save enough money to be able to go to Berkeley, I then transferred to University of California at Berkeley. 

Donald Trauger's Interview

Donald Trauger: Yes, I’m Donald Trauger. And Trauger is T-R-A-U-G-E-R, Trauger. My mother-in-law when we first married would say auger, Trauger so she could remember it. [Laughter.]

Kelly: All right. Well, tell us how you came to Oak Ridge and how—what you did as your role in the Manhattan Project; where you were from and how you got involved.

George Mahfouz's Interview

Cynthia Kelly: Why don’t you start, George, by telling us your name and spelling it.

George Mahfouz: I’m George Mahfouz, last name is spelled M-A-H-F-, as in Frank, -O-U-Z, as in zebra.

Kelly: Is that Egyptian? 

Mahfouz: It’s Middle Eastern. The name is Syrian. 

Kelly: Anyways, sorry, next question—tell us about your background, you know, where you went to college...

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