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The Francis Crick Papers

Letter from Francis Crick to Maurice Wilkins pdf (158,638 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Francis Crick to Maurice Wilkins
In this letter Crick resigned himself to the publication of Watson's book, the Double Helix, because it enjoyed widespread support, and suggested that he and Wilkins limit themselves to rewriting "the more offensive and misleading parts."
Number of Image Pages:
2 (158,638 Bytes)
1967-01-19 (January 19, 1967)
Crick, Francis
Wilkins, Maurice H. F.
Original Repository: Wellcome Library for the History and Understanding of Medicine. Francis Harry Compton Crick Papers
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Reproduced with permission of the Wellcome Library for the History and Understanding of Medicine.
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Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Ethics, Professional
Exhibit Category:
The Discovery of the Double Helix, 1951-1953
Box Number: 75
Folder Number: PP/CRI/I/3/8/4
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Publication
SubSeries: Other Publications
SubSubSeries: Watson, The Double Helix
Folder: [Correspondence Concerning Publication]
19th January 1967.
Dear Maurice,
I enclose a copy of my correspondence with Pusey, except for the first letter of which you already have a copy. I have also received from Bragg a similar letter to the one you have. I have just replied to Bragg, thanking him for his efforts and asking him to use his influence to make sure that you and I see a copy of the revised version before it is submitted for publication.
As I see the situation at the moment I think it is going to be extremely difficult to prevent publication of Jim's book in one form or another, as there are too many influential people who think it ought to be published if it can be made acceptable. We may have to limit our efforts to eliminating the more offensive and misleading parts. Probably the best way will be for the two of us to get together when the next version arrives and actually redraft the passages we don't like.
As far as I personally am concerned I would rather that the book were not published at all, but if this cannot be avoided we should at least try to make it as good a book as possible.
I am off to the States on Saturday morning and will be away for about four weeks. If there is anything you want to get into touch with me about my secretary will give you the addresses of the places I shall be visiting.
We had a rather exciting time yesterday as Sydney and I have devised a new theory to explain a lot of strange behaviour which is produced by the punctuation marks in protein synthesis. The theory is still rather speculative but if it is correct we may be able to get confirmation of it within the next few days. If it all works out well I will come and explain it to you when I come back.
F.H.C. Crick.
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