Margaret (“Chickie”) Broderick was a chemist at MIT during the Manhattan Project.
Broderick was born Margaret McHugh in Boston, Massachusetts in 1921. Growing up, she was interested in chemistry. In 1944, she heard from a friend that the laboratories at MIT were looking for workers, and successfully applied for a job. Her sister, Betty, also worked in Cambridge on underwater sound technology.
One day, her lab was informed it was now working on an Army project — the Manhattan Project. A guard was stationed in the lab at all times. Due to her position on the project, Broderick received special privileges, including a license plate that gave her access to rationed gasoline.
Broderick left the Manhattan Project shortly after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. After the war, she married and had ten children. She passed away on January 24, 2018.