Skip to main content

Henry A. Erikson papers

Identifier: uarc 579

Scope and Content

The collection contains correspondence regarding the department of physics, the construction and dedication of the physics building and miscellaneous subject files. Other correspondence with and regarding noted physicists, J. Frenkel, Edward U. Condon and W.F.G. Swann is also included in the collection.

There is one folder concerning Professor Erikson's tenure as chairman of the first Distinguished Alumni Committee (1927-1928) with lists of distinguished physics alumni. There is a small amount of material regarding Erikson's involvement with the removal of the Northern Pacific Railroad tracks from the University's campus in the 1920s. A 68-page handwritten history of the physics department by Henry A. Erikson entitled, "Retrospect," is also included in the papers.


  • Creation: 1896-1951


Language of Materials

Collection materials in English

Use of Materials

Items in this collection do not circulate and may be used in-house only.


Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code). Requests to publish should be arranged with the University of Minnesota Archives.

Biographical Note of Henry A. Erikson (1869-1955)

Henry A. Erikson, B.E.E. (1896), Ph.D. (1908) University of Minnesota. Professor and chair of the department of physics at the University of Minnesota (1915-1938). Known for his research on the ionization of gases.

Henry Anton Erikson was born on July 30, 1869 in Mount Morris, Wisconsin. He attended the University of Minnesota, earning his bachelors degree in electrical engineering in 1896 and doctorate degree in physics in 1908. From 1908-1909, Erikson continued his education at Cambridge University with J. J. Thompson. He joined the faculty at the University of Minnesota as an instructor in 1898; he was promoted to assistant professor, associate professor in 1914 and professor in 1915. Erikson served as chair of the department of physics from 1915 until his retirement as professor emeritus in 1938. He was known for his research on the ionization of gases, and in the 1930s he discovered the initial positive air ion. Henry A. Erikson died on June 22, 1957.


1 box (0.33 cubic feet)


Collection contains the papers of Henry A. Erikson, professor emeritus and head of the department of physics at the University of Minnesota.

Source of acquisition

The collection was deposited in University Archives by Dr. Erikson's daughter, Mrs. Cushman K.D. Minar in April and July 1958.

Related Materials in University of Minnesota Archives

Comptroller records

Department of Physics records

School of Chemistry records

Henry A. Erikson Papers, 1896-1951
Karen Spilman
July 2005
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Collecting Area Details

Contact The University Archives Collecting Area