Series: The Life of J. Robert Oppenheimer

A contoversial figure to this day, J. Robert Oppenheimer led the development and construction of the world's first atomic weapons. This article series explores his life from a young man, to his role in the Manhattan Project, to his blacklisting at the height of the Cold War's "Red Scare."

  • Manhattan Project National Historical Park

    Article 1: The Life of J. Robert Oppenheimer: Life Before the Manhattan Project

    Black and white photo of J. Robert Oppenheimer at Harvard.

    First in a series of three, this article highlights the pre-Manhattan Project Era life of Robert Oppenheimer, from his birthplace in New York to his time in New Mexico as a young man, followed by his college years, and into teaching at CalTech and Berkeley in California. On the cusp of Communism and political left-wing leanings, Oppenheimer finds himself, and the career he developed for many years, in the arena of atomic weapons and the start of World II. Read more