The Man With the Vision That Built Caltech

Robert Andrew Millikan's Ambition Transformed Not Only the School, but Also Southern California's Place in the World

When Robert Andrew Millikan arrived in Pasadena, California, in 1921, he was already the revered author of physics textbooks used across the country. He counted among his scientific accomplishments the measurement of the charge of the electron, the verification of Albert Einstein’s photoelectric equations, and the numerical determination of Planck’s constant h. For all this work, he would win a Nobel Prize in 1923. With the exception of Einstein, no scientist was better known to Americans.

Millikan came to the California Institute of Technology to be the director of …

When L.A.’s Jews Went Crazy for Albert Einstein

In His Three Semesters at Caltech, the Famed Physicist Brought Together a Divided Community and Earned Their Undying Love

When Albert and Elsa Einstein first visited in January 1931, the Jews of Los Angeles were besotted.

A hundred women and men, representatives of almost every Jewish organization in the city, …