SECTION A BIOGRAPHICAL NCUACS 46.2.94/A.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/A.90
SECTION B RESEARCH NCUACS 46.2.94/B.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/B.329
SECTION C FISH-EYE CAMERA NCUACS 46.2.94/C.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/C.86
SECTION D CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY NCUACS 46.2.94/D.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/D.40
SECTION E PUBLICATIONS NCUACS 46.2.94/E.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/E.118
SECTION F LECTURES NCUACS 46.2.94/F.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/F.53
SECTION G SOCIETIES AND ORGANISATIONS NCUACS 46.2.94/G.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/G.23
SECTION H VISITS AND CONFERENCES NCUACS 46.2.94/H.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/H.94
SECTION J CORRESPONDENCE NCUACS 46.2.94/J.1-NCUACS 46.2.94/J.156
This collection covers almost all aspects of Hill's career.
Section A, Biographical, consists principally of Hill's own records of his career, personal and family correspondence and photographs. It includes summaries by Hill of his research activities and some documentation of honours he received, including his election to the Fellowship of the Royal Society in 1946, and the award of its Royal and Copley medals. The section also includes notebooks used for recording domestic and personal matters.
Section B, Research, is the largest in the collection. It documents all aspects of Hill's research except that relating to the fish-eye camera, which is to be found in section C. The papers in this section document Hill's research from his days at Bedales School to research notes written very shortly before his death, a period of over seventy years. Represented here are Hill's earliest scientific interests in meteorology and dyeing, school and undergraduate notes, Hill's first postgraduate research on inorganic pigments, and his subsequent investigations into the biochemistry of haemoglobin and haematin, including his collaboration from 1926 with Keilin on the isolation of cytochrome c. There is good documentation of his work on photosynthesis including research leading up to his 1937 discovery of the 'Hill reaction', and his and F.L. Bendall's outlining of the 'Z scheme' in 1960. Hill's interest in the relationship of thermodynamics to photosynthesis is particularly well-represented - including a sequence of fifty notebooks used over a period of thirty years from 1960. Hill continued to work in other areas, most of which are represented in this section. These included work on the chemistry of anthraquinone colouring matters in plants in the 1930s, work on dye-stuffs, and collaboration with A.B. Beakbane and others at the East Malling Research Station on the biology of fruit tree rootstocks.
The bulk of the material is in the form of notebooks of various formats, but there are also research notes, graphs, calculations etc. Much of this loose material was found in Hill's folders or envelopes, often identified by subject titles inscribed thereon. At the end of the section is a sequence of photographs found loose.
Section C, Fish-eye camera, provides documentation of Hill's development of the camera in the 1920s and 1930s. There are Hill's notebooks recording his development of the lens system, many photographs taken by Hill using the lens, correspondence relating to the marketing of the camera by R. & J. Beck Ltd, and newspaper and magazine cuttings with photographs taken using the camera. The Whipple Museum of the History of Science, Cambridge holds further stereoscopic photographs and examples of the 'fish-eye' camera.
Section D, Cambridge University, is chiefly research reports on work in progress in plant biochemistry for the Department of Biochemistry annual reports and material relating to the funding of Hill's research from the 1920s until his retirement. Hill's teaching is documented in section F.
Section E, Publications, brings together notes, drafts, correspondence and other related material for some of Hill's work published or intended for publication c.1928-1985. This material has been linked where possible to the list of Hill's publications prepared for his Royal Society memoir by D.S. Bendall at NCUACS 46.2.94/A.12. It includes a number of drafts of Hill's work on the thermodynamic efficiency of photosynthesis, including those of papers submitted for publication to the Royal Society in 1961 and Nature in 1980 but rejected as unacceptable. There is also a sequence of editorial correspondence with journals and publishing houses. There is a set of Hill's published papers at NCUACS 46.2.94/E.118.
Section F, Lectures, principally consists of material for Hill's teaching at Cambridge University. It includes notes for lectures and for practical classes in plant biochemistry, chiefly dating from the 1930s and 1950s, and material for a lecture in a series organised by Joseph Needham on the history of biochemistry. There is very little material relating to public and invitation lectures.
Section G, Societies and organisations, is slight. It comprises material relating to eleven British and international organisations. Of particular interest is material relating to the British Photobiology Group (later Society) of which Hill was a founder member in 1955, and the Comité (later Association) international de Photobiologie - Hill was elected an Honorary Member in 1968.
Section H, Visits and conferences, presents a chronological sequence, 1928-1988, of some of Hill's engagements both in the UK and abroad. Those for which most documentation survives are the visit of Hill to Singapore and the Dutch East Indies in 1932, his visit to France in 1947 as part of a Cambridge University/East Malling Research Station arboricultural expedition and a visit to Nyasaland (Malawi) in 1958 to advise on the biochemistry of tea fermentation (and the subsequent establishment of a research programme).
Section J, Correspondence, is a substantial section. Hill rarely kept carbon copies or manuscript drafts of outgoing letters so the correspondence is almost entirely incoming letters. In a few cases Hill made a rough draft of a reply on the letter received. However, there are also a number of Hill's manuscript drafts, particularly those from the late 1970s, that have draft letters to two or more correspondents thereon. There are three extensive sequences of correspondence, from E.J.H. Corner, chiefly relating to Hill's visit to Singapore and the Dutch East Indies in 1932, with staff of the East Malling Research Station, in particular A.B. Beakbane, relating to joint research on fruit tree rootstocks from 1943, and with D.A. Walker, a fellow researcher on photosynthesis from the 1950s. There is also substantial scientific correspondence in section B, retained with other material with which it was found.