A Pioneering Geneticist
Hermann Joseph Muller (1890-1967) was one of the foremost geneticists of the 20th century. Across a turbulent career, Muller made foundational contributions to the scientific understanding of chromosome structure, mutation, and the nature of the gene. He was awarded the 1946 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his research demonstrating that X-rays cause genetic mutations.
A socialist and a humanist, Muller saw science as a source of social progress, and he fought against reactionary politics both in America and abroad. After winning his Nobel Prize, he became a prominent public voice for science and an international advocate of radiation safety.
Muller came to Indiana University in 1945, and held great fondness for Bloomington and the university. The Indiana University Lilly Library holds a large archive related to Hermann Muller including his correspondence, academic papers, popular writings, and research notes. Using select items from the collection, this exhibition explores the life and work of a pioneering Hoosier geneticist.