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The Francis Crick Papers

Title:
Letter from Francis Crick to Douglas R. Tobin pdf (58,097 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Francis Crick to Douglas R. Tobin
Description:
Crick here speculated about the course the discovery of the double helix might have taken "if Rosalind Franklin had let us see the details of her X-ray work," some of which was in fact supplied to Watson and Crick by Maurice Wilkins and Max Perutz.
Number of Image Pages:
1 (58,097 Bytes)
Date:
1970-11-27 (November 27, 1970)
Creator:
Crick, Francis
Recipient:
Tobin, Douglas R.
Source:
Original Repository: Wellcome Library for the History and Understanding of Medicine. Francis Harry Compton Crick Papers
URL: http://archives.wellcome.ac.uk/Exit
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Rights:
Reproduced with permission of the Wellcome Library for the History and Understanding of Medicine.
URL: http://library.wellcome.ac.uk/Exit
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Subject:
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
DNA
Crystallography, X-Ray
Exhibit Category:
Embryology and the Organization of DNA in Higher Organisms, 1966-1976
Box Number: 11
Folder Number: PP/CRI/D/1/1/19
Unique Identifier:
SCBBMJ
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Language:
English
Format:
application/pdf
image/tif
Physical Condition:
Good
Series: Correspondence
SubSeries: Alphabetical Correspondence
SubSubSeries: Correspondence 1
Folder: Correspondence T
Transcript:
27th November, 1970.
Dear Mr. Tobin
This is a brief reply to your letter of November 20th.
I think it is impossible to say what would have happened if Rosalind Franklin had let us see the details of her x-ray work before we built the DNA model. For example, we might have suggested some of our ideas to her and she might have solved the structure by herself. Alternatively, we might have been so preoccupied in trying to test the details that Linus Pauling might have had another shot and solved the structure.
About our initial theory, it is normal for scientists working in the same field to have informal discussions about their ideas before publication. This is avoided only by people who are unduly worried about priority.
On your last question, it was natural that once we knew how DNA was replicated that we should attempt to find out how it influenced the rest of the cell.
Yours sincerely
F.H.C. Crick
Metadata Last Modified Date:
2008-10-16
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