Guide to the Papers of Sir Henry Dale (as filmed by the AJCP)



National Library of Australia View Catalogue Record

Created: 2018

Collection Summary

Dale, Henry Hallett, Sir
Papers of Sir Henry Dale (as filmed by the AJCP)
Date Range
1935 - 1956
Collection Number
66 items
Language of Materials
Australian Joint Copying Project
The Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP) online portal was created with the assistance of the Australian Public Service Modernisation Fund, 2017-2020. The National Library of Australia gratefully acknowledges the contribution of the other foundation AJCP partners, the State Library of New South Wales and The National Archives of the UK, and all other organisations which supported the work of the AJCP, the world's most extensive collaborative copying project, operating from 1948 to 1997.


Scope and Contents

The Australian Joint Copying Project filmed selected items from the Papers of Sir Henry Dale at The Royal Society including: Papers 1941-43 of the British Commonwealth Science Committee of the Royal Society regarding H.C. Webster and inter-dominion scientific collaboration; correspondence 1944 between Dale and Sir Howard Florey on the manufacture of penicillin in Australia; Papers 1944-46 concerning the Empire Scientific Conference in 1946. Correspondents include Sir Henry Tizard and Sir David Rivett; papers concerning Dale's tour of New Zealand and Canada in 1950; Papers 1951-56 relating to a biography of Lord Rutherford; and Correspondence 1942-49 with E. Singer of Melbourne concerning paper on the influence of metals on diphtheria intoxication and Singer's application for the Chair of Bacteriology at Queensland University.

Conditions Governing Access

Available for Access.

Conditions Governing Use

Many of the records digitised as part of the AJCP are still in copyright. Readers wishing to publish or reproduce documents should seek permission, in the first instance, from The Royal Society London.

Preferred Citation

Acknowledgement of use of this material should refer to the location of the original material and to the Australian Joint Copying Project.

Items from this collection should include references to The Royal Society London and to the AJCP nla.obj number, which serves as the online identifier for the digital copy.

Example: M Series: E.Sabine to Fox, 15 December 1855, The Royal Society, MS 710 File 91, (AJCP ref:

Archival History

Material selectively filmed at The Royal Society as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project, 1983 (AJCP Reels: M1941). Original microfilm digitised as part of the AJCP Online Delivery Project, 2017-2020.

Existence and Location of Originals

Royal Society, London, England.For more information see Sir Henry Dale at the Royal Society. Collection reference: HD, Dale Papers (

Existence and Location of Copies

The original AJCP microfilm of the records filmed from this collection is available at the National Library of Australia [] as well as other institutions holding AJCP microfilm.

Finding-aid Notes

This finding aid is a revised online version of the original finding aid prepared by the Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP), published by the National Library of Australia in 2018. The original AJCP finding aids were unpublished typescripts or photocopies available from libraries that held copies of the original microfilm. The Series and File numbering used in this finding aid were correct when the records were filmed in 1983. The numbering has since been changed by the Royal Society. Refer to the finding aid available at The Royal Society.

Dates used in this finding aid refer to the date range of the records selected for filming rather than to the date range of the Series or Files.

Pieces that were not filmed by the Australian Joint Copying Project have not been included in this Finding Aid.


Australia; Bacteriologists; Callaghan, F.R.; Canada; Dale, Sir Henry; Empire Scientific Conference (1946); Florey, Sir Howard, 1st Baron; Marsden, Sir Ernest; Medical research; New Zealand: visits to; Penicillin; Rivett, Sir A.C. David; Royal Society; Rutherford, J.; Rutherford, Sir Ernest, 1st Baron; Singer, E.; Tizard, Sir Henry; University of Queensland; Webster, H.C.


Originally cited in Australian Joint Copying Project Handbook. Part 8: Miscellaneous (M) Series. Third Edition, published 1998. Entry 121, p44.

Biographical / Historical

Sir Henry Hallett Dale (1875-1968). Educated at Leys School, Cambridge, and Trinity College, Cambridge. Joined staff of Wellcome Physiological Research Laboratories 1904 and Medical Research Committee 1914. First Director of National Institute for Medical Research 1928-42. Awarded 1936 Nobel Prize for Medicine (with O. Loewi) for discoveries relating to the chemical transmission of nerve impulses. Director of Royal Institution 1942-46. Secretary of Royal Society 1925-35. President of Royal Society 1940-45. Chairman of Scientific Advisory Committee to War Cabinet 1942-47. President of British Association 1947. President of Royal Society of Medicine 1948-50. President of British Council 1950-55.

Item Descriptions

Series 8.1. Royal Society. British Commonwealth Science Committee- Papers, 1941 - 1943

Minutes, papers and some correspondence. The papers include: H. C. Webster. Inter-Dominion scientific collaboration; existing facilities.

Overseas scholarships tenable by scholars of the New Zealand University. (2 files: 55 papers)

Series 8.2. Royal Society. Scientific cooperation with British Commonwealth- Correspondence and Papers, 1941 - 1943

(1 file: 36 papers)

Correspondents include Lord Bledisloe, H. C. Webster, A. V. Hill and N. Wright. Most of the papers refer to the British Commonwealth Science Committee.

Series 8.3. Royal Society. Empire Scientific Conference June-July 1946, 1944 - 1946

20 items

Correspondence and Papers (2 files).Selectively filmed.

C. H. Kellaway (Melbourne) to Dale, 3 March 1944 (File 1)

Proposals of Sir Henry Tizard for Empire conferences and interchange of scientists.

E. J. Hartung. Notes on Sir Henry Tizard's proposals, 25 February 1944 (File 2)

Dale to C. R. Attlee, 6 May 1944 (File 6)

Proposal for conference with Dominions.

Dale to Sir Henry Tizard, 25 May 1944 (File 9)

Conference with Dominions.

Sir Henry Tizard to Dale, 28 May 1944 (File 10)

Conference with Dominions.

Dale to Sir Henry Tizard, 14 July 1944 (File 14)

Conference with Dominions.

Memorandum on proposed Empire Scientific Conference, 3 August 1944 (File 15-16)

A. C. Egerton to Dale, 7 November 1944 (File 23)

Conference with Dominions.

Dale to C. R. Attlee, 11 November 1944 (File 25)

Conference with Dominions.

C. R. Attlee to Dale, 21 November 1944 (File 26)

Conference with Dominions.

Preliminary statement on subjects for discussion, 19 January 1945 (File 27)

Outline of programme of Empire Scientific Conference Background papers on dissemination of scientific information and interchange of scientists throughout Empire (File 38)

B. J. A. Bard (File 53)

G. T. Bray (File 54)

Sir David Chadwick (File 55)

R. S. Hutton (File 56)

Sir David Rivett (File 57)

D. Cairns (File 60)

W. M. Hamilton (File 63)

Recommendations of Empire Scientific Conference (File 67-88)

Series 13.17. British Council. Australia, 1943

Correspondence between Dale and J. G. Crowther (British Council) on lectures in Australia on British contribution to science, February 1943. (1 file: 2 letters)

Series 16.6. Royal Society of New Zealand, 1952

Correspondence between Dale, F. Callaghan and M. Wood on Dale's election as a honorary member of the Society, its financial problems, and the visit of Sir John Cockroft to New Zealand. (1 file: 4 letters)

Series 31.2. New Zealand and Canada, 1949 - 1952

Correspondence concerning Dale's tour of New Zealand and Canada in 1950, including proposed itinerary and lectures, discussions on the organization of the New Zealand Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, Dale's Rutherford Lecture, and his travels in New Zealand. Correspondents include Sir Ronald Adam, E. Marsden, F. R. Callaghan (Wellington), R. A. Falla (Christchurch), W. E. Adams (Dunedin), and Sir Theodore Rigg (Nelson). (1 file: 221 papers)

Series 35.3. P. A. Buxton Correspondence, 1949

1 item

Correspondence between Dale and P. A. Buxton (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine) concerning financial assistance to H. Womersley (Adelaide) for his monograph on Trombiculidae of the Asiatic-Pacific region. Contains Files 1-3.

Series 35.4. F. R. Callaghan Correspondence, 1951

Correspondence between Dale and F. R. Callaghan (Wellington) concerning the Congress of the Royal Society of New Zealand, Lady Rutherford, the need for closer liaison between Australia and New Zealand societies, and industrial unrest in New Zealand. (1 file: 2 letters)

Series 37.8. Sir Howard Florey, 1944

1 item

Correspondence (items 9-11).

Finding Aid Note

Filmed selectively.

Correspondence between Dale and Sir Howard Florey on the manufacture of penicillin in Australia, June 1944 (File 9-11)

Series 43. Papers relating to a biography of Lord Rutherford, 20 December 1951 - 4 September 1953

11 items

Archival History

Filmed selectively.

E. Marsden (London) to Dale, 20 December 1951 (File 1)

Sends material on Rutherford.

E. Marsden. 'Lord Rutherford'. (18 pp., typescript) (File 2)

E. Marsden to Dale (File 3)

Sends draft of McGill chapter; has written most of New Zealand chapter, June 7.

Manuscript of biography of Rutherford (File 4)

Covers early years at Cambridge.

(41 pp., typescript with many handwritten alterations)

J. Rutherford (New Plymouth) to Dale, 4 September 1953 (File 5)

Sends recollections of early life of brother.

J. Rutherford. 'Earliest recollections-Foxhill; Further reminiscences; Hop-picking holiday; Charcoal-burning at Belgrave; Havelock days' (File 6)

J. Rutherford to Dale, n.d. (File 7)

Requests return of manuscript.

E. Marsden. 'Baron Rutherford of Nelson, 1871-1937.' Reprinted from Transactions of Royal Society of New Zealand, vol. 68 (1938) (File 27)

T. H. Laby. Lord Rutherford. (Melbourne, Ford, 1944) (File 30)

E. Marsden. Rutherford Memorial Lecture, 1948. Reprinted from Proceedings of the Physical Society. A. Vol. 63 (1950) (File 32)

H. Dale. Some personal memories of Lord Rutherford of Nelson. (Nelson, Cawthron Institute, 1950) (File 33)

Series 44.12. E. Singer, 1942 - 1949

Correspondence between Dale and E. Singer (Melbourne) concerning paper on the influence of metals on diptheria intoxication, and Singer's application for the Chair of Bacteriology at Queensland University. (1 file: 18 papers)

Series 46.1. Miscellaneous Correspondence: Australia, 7 April 1944

F. G. Nicholls to Dale: return to Australia; G. B. Gresford to be successor as Australian Scientific Liaison Officer in London. (1 file: 1 letter)

Series 46.9. Miscellaneous Correspondence: New Zealand, March 1943

Correspondence between Dale and A. L. Poole (N.Z. Scientific Liaison Officer) concerning ergotism in dairy cattle. (1 file: 4 letters)

Series 62.4. Correspondence on biography of Lord Rutherford, 27 August 1951 - 28 August 1951

2 items

Archival History

Filmed selectively.

Dale to E. Marsden, 27 August 1951 (File)

Discusses the Rutherford Papers and plans for photocopies.

E. Marsden to Dale, 28 August 1951 (File)

The Rutherford Papers

Series 62.5. Correspondence on biography of Lord Rutherford, 22 January 1953 - 12 May 1956

6 items

Archival History

Filmed selectively.

Dale to E. Marsden, 22 January 1953 (File)

Inquires about progress on biography.

E. Marsden to Dale: reasons for delay, 23 February 1953 (File)

Dale to E. Marsden: delay, 23 February 1953 (File)

E. Marsden to Dale, 13 April 1954 (File)

Discusses: departure for New Zealand; draft of book.

Dale to E. Marsden, 2 May 1956 (File)

Cancellation of agreement with Faber.

E. Marsden (Wellington) to Dale, 12 May 1956 (File)

Agrees to cancellation; intends to proceed with manuscript.

Series 70. Photographs

1 item

C. H. Kellaway (2 photographs) (File 11)

Series 71.2. Cutting book, 1950

1 item

Archival History

Filmed selectively.

Newspaper cuttings on Dale's New Zealand tour (19 pp.), February 1950 - April 1950 (File)

Series 71.3. Cutting book. New Zealand tour, 1950

Newspaper accounts of Dale's tour of New Zealand, receptions, lectures and interviews, and articles on Lord Rutherford, medical research, Government funding of research, and science and education.

Series 79.8. Lectures for New Zealand and Canadian tour, 1950

'Some personal memories of Lord Rutherford of Nelson.' (18 pp., original typescript)

Archival History

Filmed selectively.

Series 138.11. Photographs of Lord Rutherford

Includes photographs of Rutherford's family, their houses at Pungarehu and Foxhill, Canterbury University College, the den where Rutherford worked on the detection of electro-magnetic wireless waves, and members of the Cambridge University Natural Science Club, 1898.