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Letter from Evelyn Witkin to Joshua Lederberg

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  • Chemistry


8% RUTGERS THE STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW JERSEY DEPARTMENT OF BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES=BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES BUILDING.DOUGLASS CAMPUS NEW BRUNSWICK-NEW JERSEY 08903 July 22, 1982 Dr. Joshua Lederberg The Rockefeller University New York, NY 10021 Dear Josh, Sorry for the long delay in sending you these letters. On reading them over, I found them veryembarrassing, in that they focus on the one piece of work and the one published paper of mine that I really wish to forget. This wasx first post-Ph.D. work, using the phage-resistance system to look at chemical mutagenesis. It was an awful system, and I was very raw. Furthermore, Demerec was a kind but totally uncritical mentor, and instead of learning rigor from him, I had to teach it to myself, slowly, over time. I hope my subsequent work showed that I did learn it. So please accept the letters for what is interesting and true in them, and be charitable about my only major scientific goof! I'm off in a few days, of all things, to take the Yeast Genetics course -at Cold Spring Harbor. No special reason (I have no advance desire to desert E. coli), except that I think it would be fun to try a new creature and think some new thoughts. I've been on a treadmill since I came back from Europe, but I'll be back from CSH mid-August, and would love to have you and your family visit here over Labor Day weekend, if you'll be in the East. I'll keep the pool open till after that, so all the facilities of Hotel Witkin will be available. Part or all of the weekend will be fine for me -- I've lots of room for all of you. Three weeks in CSH will be strange, what with all the ghosts walking Bungtown Road! I hope I can take the total-immersion pace of the course -- 1 hear its a killer! Paul Margolin is taking it, too, so I'll have a buddy, at least. Regards to Marguerite, David and Annie -- I hope to see you all come September. Affectionately, Evelyn M. Witkin

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