In this interview, Sheila Rowan and Jo-Ellen Iacovino recall what life in Happy Valley was like for children, and how they felt seeing their mother go to work for the first time. They remember going to school for the first time, the difficulty of finding spaces to play in the muddy area, and the constant turnover of the site. Rowan and Iacovino also discuss adjusting to the post-war period.
Gale Kenney was a member of the Special Engineering Detachment at Oak Ridge, where he worked inside the K-25 Gaseous Diffusion plant. With his engineering background, Kenney led a predominantly female team to test the miles of piping used in the gaseous diffusion process. In this interview, Kenney discusses his experience at K-25, the social life in Oak Ridge, and the workers’ reaction to the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
Helen Jernigan was a young woman when she was offered a job working in the recreational facilities in Oak Ridge. Eventually, she moved on to become editor of the local newspaper, Carbide Courier. Jernigan recalls the nightlife young men and women were encouraged to participate in as a break from life in the secret city.