The Good Old Days


New: Added 15th Feb: Photos from Phys Dept Archives
New: Added 2nd April: Photos from Schuster Archives
(Rutherford on holiday. Boltzmann etc in Manchester 1903)


The particle physics group at Manchester can be traced back to the start of the 20th Century. Arthur Schuster, professor of physics, relinquished his post in favour of Ernest Rutherford who then started a series of classic experiments on the nucleus in the department. The next great phase in Manchester was in the 1940s when Rochester and Butler observed the V particles in cosmic rays. These were K mesons and Lambda baryons and hence heralded the first observation of the strange quark. These was a massive exodus to Imperial College in the 1950s when Blackett left and many followed. Others (e.g. Rochester, Wilson,Hodson went to Durham and Leeds.) The group was revived in 1963 when John Ellison and Brian Dickinson finished their PhDs on nuclear physics and switched to HEP. Robin Marshall was their first PhD student. Paul Murphy was appointed professor in 1965 and led the group until his retirement in 1991. Robin Marshall returned as head of the group in 1992

From our Department Archives:
I am working through old prints and plates in our archives.
Below are some specimens.
These are only Gif files at 72bpi. The originals are pretty good.

Please note that the copyright to these pictures is held variously by the Department of Physics & Astronomy at Manchester University, Robin Marshall and The Living Archive. The marketing of copies of these archives is done by Frontiers Science and Television Ltd. The pictures here are for viewing only and may not be downloaded to a permanent file, copied, printed ot stored.



Former students and staff who made a name for themselves:
J J Thomson. Study and research 1871-76 (entered at age 14). Left and discovered the electron, awarded Nobel prize.
J H Poynting. Student 1867-72 (one of the very first students in the new Physical Laboratories) Lecturer 1876-79. Left to become Professor at Mason College (which became Birmingham University).
C T R Wilson. Student 1884-87. Went to Cambridge, invented the expansion cloud chamber and was awarded Nobel prize.
E Rutherford. 1907-1919. Nobel prize 1908.
J Chadwick. Researcher 1910-11, got MSc. Left for Cambridge, discovered neutron and awarded Nobel prize.
H Geiger. Researcher 1910-14. Did the original "Rutherford scattering" experiment with Marsden. Devised ionisation counter.
N Bohr. Research Staff 1913-14. Worked on structure of atom. Awarded Nobel prize.
W L Bragg. Director 1919-1937. Nobel prize for X-ray crystallography, shared with Dad, 1915.
N Mott. Lecturer 1929-30. Left for Cambridge and then Professor at new University in Bristol. Awarded Nobel prize in 1977.
H Bethe. Research staff 1932. Left for Cornell. Awarded Nobel prize.

Douglas Hartree. 1929-1946. Built and operated a differential analyser to evaluate the wave functions of multi-electron atoms.
P M Blackett 1937-53. Director. Awarded Nobel prize for developing cloud chamber and confirming positron.
G D Rochester Discovered strange particles in 1947 with C C Butler.
C C Butler co-discovered strange particles in 1947. Went on to be head of dept at Imperial College and then VC at Loughborough.
A Wolfendale. PhD 1954 in cosmic rays. Former Astronomer Royal.


Picture A1. This is the nearest to the original print of Geiger and Rutherford that we have in the department. The original negative is lost and this is a sepia print off the original negative. This print in its frame was given to the department from the estate of Prof H Stansfield who was a fellow, demonstrator and lecturer in the dept from 1904-12.
Picture A2. The 5th Solvay Conference was held in Brussels from 23-29 October 1927. I have an original print of the delegates brought back from the conference by W L Bragg. The group photo which is of very good quality, contains just about everyone who was anyone during the golden age (except Rutherford and W H Bragg).
In the photo:

Back row: A Piccard, E Henriot, P Ehrenfest, Ed Herzen, Th De Donder, E Schroedinger, E Verschaffelt, W Pauli, W Heisenberg, R H Fowler, L Brillouin.
Middle Row: P Debye, M Knudsen, W L Bragg, H A Kramers, P A M Dirac, A H Compton, L de Broglie, M Born, N Bohr.
Front Row: I Langmuir, M Planck, Mme Curie, H A Lorentz, A Einstein, P Langevin, Ch E Guye, C T R Wilson, O W Richardson.


Picture A3 In 1962, there was a "Rutherford Jubilee Conference" held in our department. The official photo of president, chairman and speakers shows a young C Rubbia in the back row:

Back row: P C Gugelot, D H Wilkinson, H H Barschall, H E Gove, J M Cassels, C Rubbia, G E Brown.
Middle Row: L T B Goldfarb, S A Moskowski, M Goldhaber, R J Blyn-Stoyle, S Devons, H McManus, H P Noyes, R H Dalitz, B J Cohen, A Bohr.
Front Row: R E Peierls, J S Bell, B H Flowers, Sir E Marsden, D R Inglis, J B French.


Picture A4 This picture shows Robert Wilhelm Bunsen, (1811-99). Gustav Robert Kirchhoff (1824-1897) together with Sir Henry Roscoe at Manchester University in 1862. Three years previously, Bunsen had identified the elements Caesium and Rubidium. Well known to schoolchildren for his law in electrical circuits, Kirchhoff also was the first to determine that when elements are heated to incandescance, they all emit spectra characteristic of the element.
This photo is in v good condition. On the back is written in pencil "Three men. waite for title". The caption on the photo says "Bunsen, Kirchhoff and Roscoe at Manchester 1862. When the photo was taken, Bunsen was 51 and Kirchhoff 38 and it is certainly Bunsen in the middle. So I would appreciate confirmation of the appearance of the other two please from anyone who knows what they looked like!
Prof J von Krogh of Heidelberg identifies the gentleman on the left as Robert Gustav Kirchhoff, Professor der Physik, Universitaet Heidelberg, 1854-1875 and the gentelman in the middle as the chemist Bunsen.

Picture A5 Holiday in Scotland. Front row: Otto Darbishire (lecturer) Eileen Rutherford, Cary Schuster, Sybil Schuster, Ernest Rutherford. Back row: Norah Schuster, Unknown, Unknown.

Picture A6 This photo was taken in the Manchester Physics department during the 1903 British Association meeting held in Southport.

Back row: C H Lees, Sir Joseph Larmor, A Schuster, F Soddy, Roche
Front row: Hillman, -?-, Mascart, L Boltzmann, G T Beilby

Larmor was Senior Wrangler in 1880 beating J J Thompson into 2nd place.



Picture 1. Manchester HEP 5-a-side soccer team in 1965
l to r: Robin Marshall, Mike Ibbotson, Tony Harckham, Roger Templeman, Alf Wentworth


Picture 2. Mike Ibbotson, George Tipler and Paul Murphy 1966.
Picture 3. Andreas Kanaris 1966

Life in the lab in 1966
Picture 4.
Some of the HEP group in the lab 1966.
Mike Albrow (now at Fermilab) 2nd left
Picture 5. More of the HEP group in the lab 1966. Edna Murphy centre
Picture 6. Max Hayton and Mike Albrow.

The HEP Group's 5-a-side soccer team in action
Picture 7. Bad temper between Pete Cockburn(?) and Roger Templeman
Picture 8. Robin Marshall takes a shot through colleague Wentworth's legs
Picture 9. 1966 and another goal for HEP (Robin Marshall).
SLAC computer guru Les Cottrell is 2nd left.

Some famous oldies
Picture 10. Ernest Rutherford and Picture 11. Hans Geiger
in the Schuster lab in about 1912
Picture 12. Paul Murphy and Les Bird, at Daresbury in 1967
Picture 13. Roger Templeman and Robin Marshall, 1967


Pictures of other former dept members coming soon as time permits:
Bohr (structure of atom), Bethe & Peierls (worked together in 1930s), Rochester and Butler (strange particles), Blackett (Nobel prize for cloud chamber work), Bragg (shared Nobel prize with father), Moseley (method of measuring Z - sorted out the periodic table), Darwin (grandson of Charles), Michel (parameter), Chadwick (left to discover neutron), Nuttall (Geiger-Nuttall law), v Hevesey (Nobel prize for radioactive tracing), Rosenfeld (worked with Bohr).
Still searching for old pictures of former students:
J J Thomson & A Eddington (update, got them now)

If you have, or know of, any old photographs connected with scientific history and culture, please let me know.
This page compiled by
Prof Robin Marshall
R.Marshall@man.ac.uk