Oppenheimer's Invitation to Fermi

March 11, 1943

325 Le Conte Hall
University of California
Berkeley, California
March 11, 1943

Dr. Enrico Fermi
Metallurgical Laboratory
University of Chicago
Chicago, Illinois

Dear Dr. Fermi:

We are planning to hold a three-weeks conference at Los Alamos, starting probably about April 15. The purpose of the conference is to discuss the scientific problems of the Los Alamos laboratory and to define its schedules and its detailed experimental program. The background of our work is so complicated, and information in the past has been so highly compartmentalized, that it seems that we shall have a good deal to gain from a leisurely and thorough discussion. My own view Is that this is likely to contribute essentially toward our carrying out our directive in the simplest and fastest way. I want very much to have you present at the conference, whether or not you will have moved permanently to the area by that time.

We are still a little vague on how complete the living arrangement at the site will be and how soon we can get things going there. For this reason, it may be necessary to delay the conference a little. But I shall make every effort to have things comfortable enough so that we can meet and work effectively from the middle of April on. I will let you know at a later time just what the timing is. There will be some twenty people invited to this conference, of whom the majority will already be in residence at the site. If the pressure of other work makes it impossible for you to be there during the whole three weeks, will you nevertheless plan to come for as much of that time as possible. I should suggest that it would be better to come in the later rather than the earlier half.

Very sincerely yours,

Robert Oppenheimer