Professor David B. Nicodemus was a physicist at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory from 1943 to 1946. He went to Los Alamos from Stanford University with physicists Hans Staub and Felix Bloch. After earning his Ph.D. in 1946 from Stanford University, Nicodemus taught at that institution for four years and continued working with Bloch and Staub on their low energy nuclear program. In 1950, Nicodemus joined Oregon State College's Physics Department. He later served as Acting Dean of Science in 1965-1966 and was Dean of Faculty from 1966 until his retirement in 1986. Dean Nicodemus died in Corvallis, Oregon, on June 19, 1999. The son of missionary parents, Nicodemus was born in Kobe, Japan, and lived in Sendai as a child and youth until he came to the United States in the early 1930s for college.
The David B. Nicodemus Papers consist of Nicodemus' Ph.D. dissertation, "The Average X-ray Energy Expended in Forming an Ion pair in Argon"; reprints of publications that he authored or co-authored, 1948-1958; a 1958 manuscript, "Scattering of 14.5 Mev Neutrons by Complex Nuclei" with photographs; the 1949 M.S. thesis of Melvin G. Nielsen, "Neutron Polarization in a Single Iron Crystal", whom Nicodemus advised at Stanford University; correspondence between Nicodemus and other physicists, including Felix Bloch, regarding his research; and a reprint of a 1960 publication by Curtis G. Chezem, one of Nicodemus' Ph.D. students at Oregon State College. The Nicodemus Papers also include a booklet commemorating the 40th anniversary reunion (in 1985) of scientists who worked at Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory and "The Kingdom of the Lark, A Small Boy's World: 1913-1924" by Richard A. Faust, a boyhood friend of Nicodemus, about growing up in Sendai, Japan.