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NSF History - Publications

National Science Foundation Act of 1950 (PDF, 30KB)
This legislation, Public Law 81-507, signed by President Harry S. Truman on May 10, 1950, established the National Foundation.

Annual Reports
Since 1951, NSF has published a yearly report presenting some of the highlights and research results that occured in the previous fiscal year.

America's Investment in the Future (the book)
Published for NSF's 50th anniversary, the book highlights some of the achievements and benefits that have resulted from the Foundation's investments in science and engineering over the years.

Important Historical Dates

Nifty 50
NSF-funded inventions, innovations and discoveries that have become commonplace in our lives.

Science - The Endless Frontier
A report to the President by Vannevar Bush, Director of the Office of Scientific Research and Development, July 1945.

The National Science Foundation: A Brief History
A report by George T. Mazuzan, Former NSF Historian Office of Legislative and Public Affairs , July 15, 1994. (General Publication, NSF8816, 1994)

Inventing US Science Policy
By William A. Blanpied
Reprinted with permission from William A. Blanpied, "Inventing US Science Policy,"
Physics Today, 51(2), February 1998, pp 34-40. Copyright 1998 American Institute of Physics.

National Science Foundation: Celebrating 50 Years
A brochure from NSF's 50th anniversary celebration in 2000. The brochure provides a brief history of the Foundation and offers details from the NSF50 event that commemorated the first fifty years from 1950-2000.
Note: this content is provided for archival purposes only.

Address to the Centennial Anniversary AAAS
President Harry S Truman's September, 1948 speech to the Centennial AAAS Annual Meeting in Washington, DC. This speech is credited with giving rise to NSF's creation.

State of the Union Address (Excerpt 1) (Excerpt 2)
Excerpts from the Address Delivered by President Harry S Truman on January 4, 1950.

The National Science Foundation Class of 1952
William A. Blanpied, Division of International Programs/National Science Foundation