EXCEPTIONALLY RARE LITHOPRINT VERSION OF THE SMYTH REPORT, A "REMARKABLY FULL AND CANDID ACCOUNT" OF THE ATOM BOMB (PMM), ONE OF ONLY A FEW COPIES SIGNED BY HENRY DEWOLF SMYTH
SMYTH, Henry DeWolf. A General Account of the Development of Methods of Using Atomic Energy for Military Purposes under the Auspices of the United States Government 1940-1945. [Washington: Government Printing Office], 1945. Quarto, original cream paper wrappers, staple-bound as issued. $8500.
Rare 1945 lithoprint of the Smyth Report on the creation of the atom bomb, preceding the first published version, signed by Henry DeWolf Smyth on the title page, complete and in original wrappers, one of only 1000 copies printed, accompanied by the Offprint from the Princeton University Library Chronicle with Smyth's account of the production of this historic lithoprint.
This is the rare lithoprint version of the first account of the Manhattan Project and the creation of the atomic bomb, as documented from 1944 to 1945 in this Official Report chiefly authored by the Chairman of the Department of Physics at Princeton, Henry DeWolf Smyth. This exceptional work became known as the Smyth Report. According to Smyth's account of this Report's production, as soon as the lithoprint version was printed in the Adjutant General's Office in 1945, copies "were immediately slapped into the safe in General Groves' office in the Pentagon because their content was still classified TOP SECRET and remained so until August 11, when the whole report was made public by President Truman's order" (Offprint, 180). The Smyth Report is renowned for its "remarkably full and candid account of the development work carried out between 1940 and 1945 by the American-directed but internationally recruited team of physicists, under the code name 'Manhattan District,' which culminated in the production of the first atomic bomb" (PMM 422). Lithoprint version: without the "two-word major title… [that] appears on the certificate of copyright" (Offprint, 185). This lithoprint was produced from stencils made by several typewriters in the Adjutant General's Office, along with a virtually unobtainable 12-chapter mimeograph version and a very small number of ditto printings. Smyth recalls that only "one thousand copies were made" of the lithoprint version (Offprint, 180). Once the Smyth Report was declassified (six days after the bombing of Hiroshima and three days before the declaration of war's end), it was issued by both the Government Printing Office and Princeton University Press in the first published editions. Accompanied by a copy of the Offprint from Princeton University Library (1976), containing: Smyth's "The 'Smyth Report,'" Datus C. Smith, Jr.'s "Publishing History of the 'Smyth Report,'" and Earle E. Coleman's "The 'Smyth Report': A Descriptive Check List." PMM 422(e). Coleman 3, 213. Norman 1962.
A fine copy of this important report, most rare signed.