Stories from the Smithsonian

Get to know the people who have shaped the Smithsonian since its founding in 1846, through their letters, diaries, oral histories, and photographs.

Scroll to explore this topic

January 5, 1917 - Secretary Walcott to Goddard Approving the Grant

Robert Goddard Letter - Jan 5, 1917 - Page 1

January 5, 1917.

Dear Sir:

Referring to your letter of October 19, 1916, and to the manuscript and patent specifications accompanying the letter of December 4, 1916, which are returned separately, I have submitted your proposals and data to a committee consisting of Dr. C. G. Abbot of this Institution and Dr. E. Buckingham of the Bureau of Standards for report with recommendations. Both gentlemen having verified the soundness of your theoretical work, the accuracy of the numerical data, and being favorably impressed with the ingenuity of your mechanical and experimental dispositions, the clearness of your exposition, and recognizing the value of that which is proposed, they concur in recommending support on the part of the Institution.

I, therefore, have pleasure in approving a grant to you of $5,000.00 from the Hodgkins Fund, to be used for the purposes described in your letter of October 19, 1916. You will report yearly, or oftener if notable progress is made, 

Robert Goddard Letter - Jan 5, 1917 - Page 2

detailing results reached. Messrs. Abbot and Buckingham will continue to act as a committee for the Institution on the matter, and you will communicate directly to them any details on which you may like to consult.

I am enclosing herewith a voucher and check to your order for $1,000.00, as the first payment on account of the above-named grant. It is not expected, of course, that you will submit receipts for every small item of expenditure, but a list of expenditures should be submitted from time to time, to be accompanied, where it is practicable, by receipted bills. Should a larger payment at this time be necessary to carry on the work, will you be good enough to so advise me. I should also be glad, when future payments are required, if you will notify me a few days in advance.

With best wishes for complete success in your interesting and valuable investigation, I am,

Very truly yours,
C. D. Walcott

Professor Robert H. Goddard,
Clark College,
Worcester, Mass.