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National Museum of Nuclear Science & History

Waldemar Nielsen

Strategic Bombing SurveyJapan

Manhattan Project VeteranMilitary Veteran

Waldemar Nielsen (1917-2005) worked on the postwar surveys of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan.

Nielsen was born in Greensburg, Pennsylvania. He received a B.A. and an M.A. from the University of Missouri. He was selected as a Rhodes Scholar, but was unable to attend due to the outbreak of World War II.

Nielsen instead joined the Department of Agriculture, and later served as a radar officer in the Pacific theater, for which he received a bronze star. In 1945, he went to Japan as part of the Division of Program Surveys. During his time there, Nielsen worked on the Morale Division of the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey in Japan.

After the war, Nielsen worked for the U.S. government transmitting information on the Marshall Plan. He later became an expert on philanthropic organizations, publishing The Big Foundations in 1972. He also founded a consulting firm on corporate social policy, Waldemar A. Nielsan Inc.

Nielsen died on November 2, 2005 in New York.

The Atomic Heritage Foundation would like to thank the Nielsen family for their generous donation of photographs (including those featured below) from Waldemar Nielsen’s Japan collection.

Waldemar Nielsen's Timeline
1917 Mar 27th Born in Greensburg, Pennsylvania.
1940 Received an M.A. from the University of Missouri.
1945 Worked on the Strategic Bombing Survey in Japan.
1974 Published "The Big Foundations.
2005 Nov 2nd Died in New York.

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