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Kastenbaum, Marvin A., Ph.D. Atomic Bomb
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Marvin A. Kastenbaum, Ph.D., papers.

  • MS 093
  • Colección
  • 1950-1997

The Marvin A. Kastenbaum, PhD, papers, MS 93, 1950-1997, contains materials related to the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC), including audio-visual materials, photographs, artifacts, personal cards, clippings, and statistical analyses compilied by the ABCC. Kastenbaum worked for 17 months as a statistician with the ABCC.

Kastenbaum's first contribution to the archive in March 1994 was a set of photographs of ABCC employees. Later, he made additional donations of artifacts, audio-visual materials and more photographs.

Kastenbaum was born in New York City on January 16, 1926. During World War II, he served with the the 124th Cavalry Regiment and later in the 613th Field Artillery Battalion. Kastenbaum was stationed in Burma, and the units he was stationed with participated in the reopening the Burma Road, a vital supply route from Burma to China.

After the war, Kastenbaum returned to his studies and graduated from the City College of New York with a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics in 1948. He received his Master's degree in statistics from North Carolina State College in 1950 and his PhD from the same institution in 1956.

In January 1953, during a hiatus from his studies, Kastenbaum took a post as statistician in the Biostatistics Department of the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission in Hiroshima, Japan. While with ABCC he had occasion to review much of the medical data which had been collected by the commission between 1947 and 1954. He and Dr. William C. Moloney wrote a study of A-bomb radiation on humans. Upon completion of the final report, Marvin A. Kastenbaum decided he would make a career of medical statistics. In September of 1954 he returned to Chapel Hill to complete the requirements for his doctorate in statistics at the University of North Carolina. While there Marvin A. Kastenbaum worked as a statistician for the University's Department of Public Health.

During his 17-month affiliation with the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission, Kastenbaum recorded some of his experiences on film. He donated three reels of 8 mm film to the archive in 1995. This film is a unique visual history. He filmed ABCC events in Japan, highlights from festivals, and scenes of daily life. Approximately one-third of the footage is devoted to ABCC personnel, activities and sites. The latter part of the film includes scenes of Hong Kong, Bangkok, India, Pakistan, Israel and Greece that Dr. Kastenbaum filmed after leaving Tokyo, Japan in May 1954. The collection is 1.75 cubic feet (3 boxes).

Dr. Kastenbaum's photographs have been rehoused and cataloged as single items and in sets. The bibliographic records and holdings are in machine readable format and can be found in the online catalog of the Houston Academy of Medicine-Texas Medical Center Library. The finding aids for the photographs are as follows: traditional card files and computerized bibliographic records in the online catalogs. All the photographs are black and white in a variety of sizes.

Some of the material in this collection appears to have been water damaged. This is especially apparent in box 2. Extra care should be taken when handling these materials. Notify an archivist if any of the material appears to be disintegrating.

This collection is 1.75 cubic feet (3 boxes.)

Kastenbaum, Marvin A., Ph.D.