Summary of Scientific/Historical Traveling Sites
Centered Around Heidelburg, Germany
Spring 2007

Wilhelm Röntgen

The Röntgen Museum, Röntgenring 8 97070 Würzburg (Telefon +49931/3511102) is open M-Th 08:00-16:00 and Friday 08:00-15:00. We contacted p-amt@mail.fh-wuerzburg.de to see if someone might show us around and explain the equipment and how Röntgen might have used it. Hr Roland Weigand is our contact. The website there is http://www.fh-wuerzburg.de/roentgen/kontakt.htm For more about the Röntgen Museum see the Rodgers website at http://webpub.allegheny.edu/employee/g/grodgers/ScientificTravelingWebsite/Roentgen.html

Röntgen’s grave in Alter Friedhof is located in Geissen. Luthergemeinde, Lutherberg 1
http://members.optusnet.com.au/jph8524/JHmongrave.htm#Roentgen

Röntgen was born in Lennep, which is today a borough of Remscheid, near Dusseldorf. The Deutsches Röntgen-Museum is located there and commemorates Röntgen’s life and discoveries. http://www.roentgen-museum.de/

There is a very descriptive and informative account of a Röntgen-centered trip from Lennep (birthplace) to Wurzburg (discovery of X-ray site) and then to the gravesite at Geissen. This article, entitled “A Holiday or a Pilgrimage? Lennep, Wurzburg, and Giessen: From Where it all Began to Where it Ended” is by Q. C. Field-Boden and is found in a newsletter of “The Radiology History & Heritage Charitable Trust”. The website for the newsletter is http://www.rhhct.org.uk/news/9.html

August Kekulé von Stradonitz

The Kekulé Collection in Darmstadt is described in the book, "The Scientific Traveler", by Tanford and Reynolds (T&R) (1992). The collection is located at the Technische Hochschule. It evidently contains a desk that once belonged to Kekulé and a "magnificently bound book, given to Kekulé on his sixtieth birthday by friends, admirers, and students. It consists of 134 photographs of the donors and their signatures and many now well known names are included: Bunsen, Erlenmeyer, Beilstein, Landolt, for example." Through Alan Rocke I obtained the contact information for Prof. Frieder Lichtenthaler, emeritus professor of organic chemistry at the Technische Universitaet Darmstadt who agreed to show us around the collection.

As part of the research for the 2007 trip, we learned about two additional Kekulé sites that we will not be able to visit this time around: 1) At the University of Bonn the old chemistry building stands along Meckenheimer Allee. There we find a bronze statue of August Kekulé. He is standing with two white stone sphinx and is lecturing while holding a book in his left hand. There is also a plaque that depicts a goddess giving a benzene ring to two engineers. This plaque symbolizes the discovery of structure of benzene by Kekulé. There is also a Kekuléstrasse in this area. Kekulé’s grave is found in Poppelsdorf Friedhof (Poppelsdorf Cemetery) in Bonn. It is made of red granite and has a beautiful bronze relief of Kekulé. 2) At the University Museum for the History of Science at the University of Ghent, Belgium they have Kekulé’s lab bench and some of his equipment. The URL for the museum is http://sarton.ugent.be/

The article “Pilgrimage through the History of Natural Science, Bonn, Germany”, by Kaoru Harada is most informative and has some excellent pictures of some of these Kekulé sites. The URL for this article is http://www.origin-life.gr.jp/2903/2903143/2903143.html.

Justus Liebig

The pharmacy where Justus Liebig was apprenticed as an apothecary in 1818 at the age of sixteen has been preserved. Evidently Liebig, according to T&R, "experimented [here] on his own with silver fulminate, had an explosion, took off part of the roof, and was (not surprisingly) fired." The pharmacy where he worked is preserved in the Marktplatz at Heppenheim on the Bergstrasse. It is near the town hall. It had been a Bierstube for a while but evidently has been restored as a pharmacy. We will check out this site on our 2007 trip.

The Liebig Museum in Giessen (see http://www.liebig-museum.de/). This is one of the best examples of an early teaching chemistry laboratory. The statue of Liebig in Darmstadt. This is located in the Ludewig Luisen Platz. Here there is a very tall column with King Ludewig on top. Off to the side there is a monument to Justus Liebig interacting with a chemistry student but the statue on top is a voluptuous nude woman! Organic chemists seem to get all the luck! We visited both of these sites in 1998.

Carl Bosch

The Carl Bosch Museum is located in Heidelberg at Schloß-Wolfsbrunnenweg 46, D-69118 Heidelberg. Hours of operation: Tous les jours de 10 h à 17 h, Fermé le jeudi (Thursday). e-mail: museum@villa-bosch.de; website: http://www.museum.villa-bosch.de/. Although somewhat off the topic of the history of the atomic concept, it looks like a fun place to visit. Unfortunately it is not open the day we will be in Heidelberg.

Robert Bunsen and Gustav Kirchhoff

The Bunsen Collection at the University of Heidelberg and the statues and markers on the hauptstrasse of Heidelberg. My webpage on this is located at http://webpub.allegheny.edu/employee/g/grodgers/ScientificTravelingWebsite/Bunsen.html. In 1998 we found the Bunsen Collection Im Neuerheimerfeld 252 and 270. Christoph Meinel has written to say that 1) Bunsen's statue now on the Hauptstrasse used to be placed in front Bunsen's first institute that no longer exists; 2) his Institute building (now housing other institutes) on Ploeck (a street name) is still very much in its original shape; 3) there is one showcase devoted to the spectroscope in the Universitäts-Museum (part of the University's main building, Senate house and seat of the Rector), but unfortunately it contains material of dubious provenance and a very rough reconstruction of the first spectroscope; 4) there is a collection of apparatus and other memorabilia, including Bunsen's death mask in the Organic Chemistry Institute at Neuenheimer Feld (i.e. the Science Campus on the other side of the Neckar river). The Chemistry Library in the same building has also some nice photographs from Heidelberg's scientific past. We may have time to investigate some of these additional Bunsen sites during the day we will spend at Heidelberg this time around.

In 1998 we did not get to walk along the Philosophenweg (“Philosopher’s Walk”) high on the hillside above the right bank of the River Neckar. There are evidently great views of the town. The walk is not dedicated to any one philosopher but has been a popular walking trail for many years. Most likely Bunsen and Kirchhoff also enjoyed walking the Philosophenweg. We may get to try this on our 2007 trip. See http://www.cvb-heidelberg.de/e553/e861/index_eng.html

There is a Pharmacy Museum in Heidelberg Castle. It has exhibits on the history of pharmaceuticals and medicine from the 16th to the 19th Century. It is located in the Apothekenturm Hours of Operation: 08:30-17:30. Admission €2.50/€1.20.
See http://www.germany-cities.com/frankfurt/features/heidelberg/

Robert Boyle

Boyle greatly admired the Astronomical Clock in Cathedral de Notre-Dame in Strasbourg, France. It is open daily 07:00-11:40; 12:40-19:00. Strasbourg is also the location of the European Parliament Buildings and the European Court of Human Rights. http://www.cathedrale-strasbourg.asso.fr/english/astronomic.htm

1st Chemical Congress, Karlsruhe

The new Baden Ständehaus, Ständehausstr. 2. The 1st Chemical Congress in 1860 was held in the meeting room of the second Chamber of State in the old Ständehaus. It was destroyed in the second world war but the new Parliament building was built on the same sight and has a similar central tower. Situated in the rotunda on the ground floor of the Ständehaus memorial, the Ständehaus Information System gives information about the state pariliament. Dienstag (T) und Donnerstag (Th) 10 – 19 Uhr, Mittwoch (W) und Freitag (F) 10 – 18 Uhr; Samstag (Sat) 10 – 14 Uhr. Egidius Fechter, Kultur- und Verkehrsamt, Postfach 54, 72394 Haigerloch, Tel. +49-7474-697-26/27http://www.karlsruhe.de/kultur/stadtgeschichte/staendehaus/history.de

Johann Kepler

The Kepler Museum in Weil der Stadt; Keplergasse 2 71263, T,Th,F 10:00-12:00, 14:00-16:00; W 10:00-12:00; Sat 11:00-12:00 & 14:00-16:00. Sun, 11:00-12:00 & 14:00-17:00. See http://www.kepler-museum.de/

Werner Heisenberg

The "Virus Room" in Haigerloch. This is the site of a German atomic chain reaction during the war. It is now called the Atomkeller-Museum. The website URL is http://www.haigerloch.de/stadt/keller_englisch/EKELLER.HTM. It is only open on Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays during March and April, 10:00-12:00 and 14:00-17:00. There is a Heisenberg exhibit there next to the Atomkellermusuem. Egidius Fechter, Kultur- und Verkehrsamt, Postfach 54, 72394 Haigerloch, Tel. +49-7474-697-26/27; T,Th,F 10:00-12:00, 14:00-16:00; W 10:00-12:00; Sat 11:00-12:00 & 14:00-16:00. Sun, 11:00-12:00 & 14:00-17:00. We may visit there in 2007 as we make our way south to Switzerland and then to Italy.

German-English Dictionary: http://lookwayup.com/free/GermanEnglishDictionary.htm