The attributions by Wilson and Elliott would seem to answer my question -- that Griffith was quite oblivious to historical
There is so little documentation about F.G.! Do you have transcripts of your 'personal communications' (refs. 22,
23, 26) for a historical record? If so, might I be privileged to see them.
Your paper does a beautiful job; I am sorry I did not have it to hand when I drafted the letter to Nature in response to Wyatt.
I will be elaborating on the convergence of genetics and microbiology in a piece I mean to do on the discovery of recombination
in E. coli K-12; and your account of Griffith's intellectual posture (which is perhaps almost a caricature of the medical
bacteriologist) is invaluable.
Would we remember Griffith today if Avery had not been waiting, the chemist with the prepared mind, to pick it up? Or would
the paper be another antiquity, like SanFelice, DNA mediated transformations having been discovered instead via phage transfection.
It seems fairly certain that Watson and Crick would have ended up putting the structure of DNA together in 1953 regardless
of Avery. But I probably would not have tried to cross bacteria, without having crawled the route from trying to transform
Neurospora; and bacteria might have been overshadowed even more by viruses in these studies than they were.
P.S. You were kind not to rub in Wendell Stanley's false start on TMV as pure protein (and correction by Pirie) to reinforce
the atmosphere of p. 14.