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Papers of Frank Adams

  • ADMS
  • Fonds
  • 1949–1989

The collection is particularly noteworthy for its coverage of Adams's lectures, research and incoming correspondence.
Section A, Biographical, is not substantial. It includes a little material of Adams's relating to his own career including three Bedford School notebooks and his PhD thesis, and material assembled by I M James during the preparation of his Royal Society memoir.
Section B, Research, provides extensive documentation of Adams's research from the 1950s until his death. It is presented in an alphabetical sequence arranged by subject title.
Section C, Lectures, is the largest in the collection. Two subsections comprise Adams's lecture notes and other teaching material for courses given at Manchester and Cambridge, and material from conferences and seminars attended by Adams throughout the world including drafts of Adams's contributions and notes of contributions by others. A third subsection consists of Adams's ms notes found in filing cabinet drawers labelled 'Other people's lectures'. It includes notes taken by Adams as an undergraduate at Cambridge in 1949.
Section D, Publications, is very slight. It includes drafts of a few of Adams's scientific papers.
Section E, Correspondence, contains virtually no extended exchanges of correspondence as very few copies of Adams's own letters survive. There is, however, significant correspondence from colleagues such as M F (later Sir Michael) Atiyah, M G Barratt, P J Hilton, I M James and S MacLane, sometimes extending over a period of twenty or thirty years.

Adams, John Frank (1930–1989), mathematician

Offers of employment

Offers of appointment at University of Chicago 1959 and 1960-61; offer of appointment at Rutgers University 1966; letter declining Adams's application for post at State University of New York, Stony Brook, 1970.
Correspondence re award of Honorary Doctorate of the University of Heidelberg, May 1986.


The material is principally Adams's undated ms drafts, notes and calculations documenting his research from the 1950s until his death. It was found in Adams's own folders with titles inscribed thereon.

These titles have been reproduced in the catalogue entries and form the basis for the arrangement of the material in an alphabetical sequence. At the end of this sequence is miscellaneous research material including 'work done' and 'work in progress'. The contents of bulky folders have been subdivided for ease of reference.

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