May is the birthday month of our museum’s namesake, physicist Norris E. Bradbury, the Laboratory’s second director. To mark the occasion, we share a mildly cheeky article from October 1945, “Hidden Atom City Great Social Leveler,” which became a part of the museum’s collection in 2017.
The article provides a snapshot of the era’s social hierarchies, as well as of domestic hardships — real and perceived — from the Lab’s early days. Without naming names, it gossips about who had a bathtub versus a shower, and the ensuing crankiness. Norris E. Bradbury is observed tackling the challenge of juggling responsibilities as a young dad while the Lab’s acting director — specifically, being on diaper duty.