Papers and corespondence of Edmund Clifton Stoner, 1899-1968

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

During his retirement, Stoner organised and selected his papers, intending to write an autobiography. The papers thus consist of his own compilation of material, with many of his own notes, dates and comments; there are also some completed narrative accounts of his school and university days, and some stories, essays and poems. There is a complete run of daily journals, 1919-1968, and Stoner's careful notes of lectures given at Cambridge by Rutherford, E.V. Appleton, G.F.C. Searle, J.J. Thomson, C.G. Darwin, C.T.R. Wilson and others, and of N. Bohr's lecture on quantum theory and atomic structure delivered in Cambridge in 1922. There is material relating to the Department of Physics, Leeds University, and an extensive correspondence covering the period 1918-1966 fully indexed by Stoner. The regular correspondence between Stoner and relatives in the London area during the Second World War forms an interesting record of the period.

Administrative / Biographical History

Edmund Clifton Stoner was born in East Molesey, Surrey and educated at Bolton Grammar School, 1910-1918, and Emmanuel College, Cambridge, 1918-1921 where he read for the Natural Sciences Tripos specialising in Physics. In 1919 he developed diabetes which entailed a restricted diet and varying periods of hospitalisation before a regular insulin regime became possible in 1927. He worked with Rutherford as a graduate student at the Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge from 1921 to 1924 when he was appointed Lecturer in Physics at Leeds University. He remained at Leeds for the rest of his life, as Reader in Physics, 1927-1939, Professor of Theoretical Physics, 1939-1951, and Cavendish Professor of Physics, 1951-1963, in succession to Richard Whiddington. In 1928 he accepted a research fellowship at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, which he held concurrently with his post at Leeds. For most of his life (he married in 1951) Stoner was solely responsible for his ageing mother and this, taken together with his diabetes, restricted much of his activity to Leeds, and he undertook few outside activities. His research interests were in magnetism and low temperatures. He was elected FRS in 1937


By section as follows: Biographical, University of Leeds, Publications, Committees, Correspondence and photographs. Index of correspondents.

Conditions Governing Access

By appointment on application to the Head of Special Collections.

Other Finding Aids

The contents are described in 'Catalogue of the papers and correspondence of Edmund Clifton Stoner FRS (1899-1968)' by Jeannine Alton and Harriot Weiskittel, 1974. (CSAC catalogue no. 6/73; Special Collections Handlist 121)

Custodial History

Deposited by the Contemporary Scientific Archives Centre, 1973. The gift of Mrs. E.C. Stoner. Received for cataloguing by CSAC, 1973