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George W. Bain Papers

Identifier: MA.00254

Scope and Contents

These papers document George Bain's career as a geologist, including his teaching, research and industry and government consulting and volunteer work. The papers contain lecture notes and course materials for many of the courses that Bain taught at Amherst College, along with documentation of some speeches given at the college. The papers also contain field notes, research materials and notes, publications, speeches and correspondence. Bain's consulting work is largely documented in his correspondence, research and reports. Notable correspondents include the Vermont Marble Company, the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission and the International Executive Service Corps (IESC). The papers also contain a small amount of personal writings and a published memoir by George Bain's wife, Anna Kahrs Bain.


  • Creation: 1920-1990
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1928-1981


Conditions Governing Access

There is no restriction on access to the collection for research use. Particularly fragile items may be restricted for preservation purposes. This collection is housed in off-site storage and requires advance notice before use. Please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

Requests for permission to publish material from the collection should be directed to the Archives and Special Collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights.

Biographical / Historical

George W. Bain was a geologist, Amherst College professor and leading expert on uranium and marble. He was born in Quebec and educated at McGill University and Columbia University, where he received a doctorate in 1927. Bain was hired as a geology instructor at Amherst College in 1926 and was active on the faculty until 1966. During World War II, as a consulting geologist to the Manhattan Project under General Leslie Groves, Bain located what proved to be the world’s largest uranium deposit in the Rand region of South Africa. For his wartime service he received the War Department Medal for Exceptional Service. In 1946 he was named to the Baruch Committee of the Atomic Energy Commission. Bain also served as a consulting geologist to the Vermont Marble Company as well as to many other companies and governments. At Amherst College, Professor Bain was chairman of the Department of Mineralogy and Geology for many years and director of the Pratt Museum. He was the author of many scientific articles on the structural geology of ore deposits and useful minerals, and had a special interest in the geology of the Northern Connecticut River Valley. In 1976 he published, with Howard A. Meyerhoff, The Flow of Time in the Connecticut Valley: Geological Imprints. He was married to Anne (Kahrs) Bain, who died in 1984. Bain died on June 10, 1991.


18.25 Linear feet (18 record cartons, 1 half archives box )

Language of Materials



The papers of George W. Bain, geologist and professor of geology at Amherst College from 1926 to 1966. The papers include teaching materials, writings, published works, correspondence, notes and research materials.


The papers are arranged into five series:

  1. Series 1: Lecture Notes and Course Materials
  2. Series 2: Research, Fieldwork and Publications
  3. Series 3: Personal Materials
  4. Series 4: Correspondence
  5. Series 5: Speeches and Addresses

Custodial History

The George Bain Papers were the gift of Elizabeth Lynch, Iris Hutchinson and Bruce Bain in 1991 in memory of George W. Bain.

Related Materials

  1. Pratt Museum of Natural History Records
  2. Amherst College Geology Department Records (unprocessed)
  3. Amherst College Non-Alumni Biographical Files - George Bain

Processing Information

The original folder titles and arrangement assigned by George Bain have been largely maintained, with minor modifications for clarity and to accomodate additions to the collection. Processed in 2004 by G. Kim (AC 2011) and Peter A. Nelson, Archvist.

Mariah Leavitt, Preservation Specialist
2016 May
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Amherst College Archives and Special Collections Repository

Amherst College Archives & Special Collections
Robert Frost Library
61 Quadrangle Drive
Amherst MA 01002-5000
(413) 542-2299