Letter from Michael Heidelberger to Edward Mellanby, Medical Research Council of Great Britain
In this letter, Heidelberger declined the informal offer of the directorship of an immunological research institute the Medical
Research Council was establishing outside London. The offer by the Council, the main public sponsor of biomedical research
in the United Kingdom, was an expression of the high esteem accorded Heidelberger by his scientific colleagues.
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1 (85,756 Bytes)
1947-09-15 (September 15, 1947)
Medical Research Council of Great Britain
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Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Antigens and Antibodies: Heidelberger and The Rise of Quantitative Immunochemistry, 1928-1954
Letter from Edward Mellanby, Medical Research Council of Great Britain to Michael Heidelberger (July 30, 1947)
I have been giving very serious thought to your proposal that I organize and direct an Institute of Immunology at Carshalton,
and have talked the matter over very thoroughly with many friends, relatives and advisers, including Doctors Palmer and Loeb,
and the Dean of our Medical School.
They, as well as I, appreciate the great honor you have done me in making this offer. I value it far more than I can say,
for to be asked to come and work with my English colleagues is, for me, an indefinitely touching and heart-warming sign of
approbation and affection. All, however, agree with me that owing to this relatively few years remaining before I reach the
retirement age, the interruption of productive work, even under the very favorable condition you have outlined, would be a
serious one, and that it would be bettor to continue quietly, with a small group, as in the past.
I fear, therefore, that we shall have to proceed on the basis on which I came to London to familiarize myself with the problem,
namely, that you may count on me at all times for such suggestions and advice as I may be able to give, and for all the time
and thought necessary for the fullest assistance to you in this important step to advance the knowledge of immunology.
P.S. I am enclosing my check for $10., which as nearly as I can calculate it, represents the unexpended portion of the L5
advanced by Dr. Harrington.