Not easy to photograph something underground

Nuclear power historyI’ve been busy with another type of book recently but am now back with the reactor pioneers in the 50s. In May 1956, Lewis Strauss, controversial in history as a most aggressive chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, took his British civil service counterpart on a tour of the construction site of Shippingport, also controversial at the time because of its great expense. What interested and amused me was Strauss’s apology to a press aide about failing to get the plant-in-construction into the press enough:

[I]t is a hard plant to photograph effectively as about 4/5 of it is below ground level, in which respect it resembles an iceberg.


American Society of Mechanical Engineers. 1980. Historic Achievement Recognized: Shippingport Atomic Power Station: A National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark. American Society of Mechanical Engineers, New York.

Balogh, Brian. 1991. Chain Reaction: Expert Debate and Public Participation in American Commercial Nuclear Power, 1945-1975. Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, p. 113.