Gertrude Blanch Papers, 19321996. Finding Aid.
Summary Information
Gertrude Blanch papers 19321996 Blanch, G., (Gertrude), 1897
9 boxes (4
cubic feet) Language: English CBI 162
The collection consists of lectures and
published articles by mathematician Gertrude Blanch, other professional
writings collected by Blanch, and some biographical material and personal and
professional correspondence.
University of Minnesota Libraries.
Charles Babbage Institute.
Access and Use
The records were given to the Charles Babbage Institute by the family
of Gertrude Blanch in 2000.
Access to the collection is unrestricted.
The Charles Babbage Institute holds the copyright to all materials in
the collection, except for items covered by a prior copyright (such as
published materials). Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair
use provisions of the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code).
Gertrude Blanch Papers (CBI 162), Charles Babbage Institute,
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.
Arrangement
The materials in this collection are arranged into the following
groups:
 Talks and writings by Gertrude Blanch, 19361994
 Writings by others, 18951969
 Photographs, 19351964
 Correspondence, 19571994
 Biographical material, 19321989
Within each series, items are arranged by record type and
chronology.
Biographical Note
Gertrude Blanch, 18971996, mathematician, received the B.S. in
mathematics with a physics minor from New York University (1932) and the Ph.D.
(1935) in algebraic geometry from Cornell University.
Born Gittel Kaimowitz in Kolno, Poland, Blanch emigrated to New York
with her family in 1907. After receiving her Ph.D., she taught at Hunter
College from 19351936. Her doctoral dissertation, Properties of the Veneroni Transformation in S4 , was
published in the American Journal of Mathematics
in 1936.
From 19381942, Blanch served as technical director of the
Mathematical Tables Project in New York. The Mathematical Tables Project was
funded by the Work Projects Administration. By 1941 it employed 450 human
computers. In 1942 the project became part of the wartime Office of Scientific
Research and Development (OSRD), and Blanch became a mathematician for the New
York office of the Applied Math panel of the OSRD.
During the war, the Mathematical Tables Project created ballistics
calculations for the Army, navigation tables for the Navy, and provided the
fundamental calculations for the Manhattan Project. After the war the project
was absorbed into the computation laboratory of the National Bureau of
Standards. While still in New York, Blanch took an active interest in the
newlyannounced electronic computing machines, and was involved with the group
that would later found the Association for Computing Machinery.
In 1948, Blanch became assistant to the director at the Institute for
Numerical Analysis in Los Angeles, another branch of the Applied Mathematics
Laboratory. In 1954 she was appointed senior mathematician at WrightPatterson
Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, in which capacity she served until her
retirement in 1967. While she was at Dayton, Blanch published half of her 30
papers, and received several citations and awards, including her election as
Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Air
Force Exceptional Service Award (both in 1963), and the Federal Woman’s Award
in 1964.
Upon her retirement from the Air Force, Blanch was awarded a
consulting contract by the Air Force through Ohio State University. When this
contract was canceled in 1970 she moved back to California and worked on her
second book, which was never published.
 Grier, David Alan. “Gertrude Blanch of the Mathematical Tables
Project,” IEEE Annals of the History of Computing ,
v. 19, no. 4 (1997): 1827.
Collection Scope and Content Note
The collection includes Gertrude Blanch’s lectures given during the
1940s and 1960; published articles and notes for her two unpublished
manuscripts, 19351994; colleagues’ and others’ writings collected by Blanch,
18951969; and photographs of Blanch, alone, with colleagues and friends, and
at awards ceremonies, 1930s1966. The collection also contains a small amount
of biographical material, 19321967, including awards and citations, records
relating to her employment, 19541967, and documentation regarding immigration
and naturalization, affidavit of birth, and record of name change. Also
included is a small amount of personal and professional correspondence,
19571994. There are also two interviews on cassette tapes. One, dated 1989,
contains an interview with Blanch by her colleague Henry Thacher and centers on
her career and professional life. On the other, labeled “late in her life,”
Blanch is interviewed by her nephew Michael Stern, and discusses her early
years and personal life.
Subject Terms
 This collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog
of the University of Minnesota Libraries. Researchers desiring materials about
related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these
headings.
 Blanch, G. (Gertrude), 1897
 Rhodes, Ida, 19001986.
 Mathematics 
Tables.
 Numerical analysis.
 MathematiciansUnited
States.
 United
States. Works Projects Administration.
 United States. National Bureau of Standards.
Box and Folder List
Location 
Title 

Talks and Writings by Gertrude Blanch, 19361994 

Talks 
Box 1 
Lectures on the Theory of Numerical Computations,
19431945. Box 1, Folder 1


"Numerical Analysis, Past and Present." 2 November 1961 Box 1, Folder 1


Writings 
Box 1 
"Properties of the Veneroni Transformation in S4." American Journal of Mathematics,
v.57, no.3, July 1936. Box 1, Folder 2


"Errors in Hayashi's Table of Bessel Functions for
Complex Arguments," with A.N. Lowan. Bulletin of the
American Mathematical Society, v.47, no.4: 291293, April 1941. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 2 
Table of Arc tan x. New
York: Federal Works Agency, 1942. Box 2


Table of Circular and Hyperbolic
Tangents and Cotangents for Radian Arguments. New York: Columbia
University Press, 1943. Box 2


Seven Point Lagrangian
Integration Formulas, with I. Rhodes. Journal of
Mathematics and Physics, v.22:no.4, December 1943. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 2 
Table of Arc sin x. New
York: Columbia University Press, 1945. Box 2


On the Computation of
Mathieu Functions.Journal of Mathematics and
Physics, v.25:no.1, February 1946. Box 1, Folder 2


The Internal
TemperatureDensity Distribution of Main Sequence Stars Built on the
PointConvective Model II. Sirius A., with R.E. Marshak.
The Astrophysical Journal, v.104:no.1, July 1946. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 2 
Tables of Spherical Bessel
Functions, vol. II. New York: Columbia University Press, 1947. Box 2


Table of the Bessel Functions
JO(Z) and JI(Z) for Complex
Arguments. New York: Columbia University Press, 1947. Box 2


Table of the Bessel Functions
YO(Z) and YI(Z) for Complex
Arguments. New York: Columbia University Press, 1950. Box 2


Table of Modified Bernoulli
Polynomials, with Roselyn Siegel. Research paper RP2060, in
Journal of Research of the National Bureau of
Standards, v.44, January 1950. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 3 
Tables Relating to Mathieu
Functions: Characteristic Values, Coefficients, and Joining Factors. New
York: Columbia University Press, 1951. Box 3

Box 2 
Tables of Chebyshev Polynomials
Sn(x) and
Cn(x).Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing
Office, 1952. Box 2


On the Numerical Solution of
Equations Involving Differential Operators with Constant Coefficients.Mathematical Tables and Other Aids to Computation
6:no.4, October 1952. Box 1, Folder 2


Addendum to a Guide to
Tables on Punched Cards, with Everett C. Yowell. Mathematical Tables and Other Aids to Computation.
7:no.41, January 1953. Box 1, Folder 2


On the Numerical Solution of
Parabolic Partial Differential Equations.Journal
of Research of the National Bureau of Standards, v.50:no.6, June 1953. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 2 
Tables of the Error Function and
its Derivative. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office,
1954. Box 2


On Modified Divided
Differences I.Mathematical Tables and Other Aids
to Computation 7:no.45, January 1954. Box 1, Folder 2


On Modified Divided
Differences II.Mathematical Tables and Other Aids
to Computation8:no.46, April 1954. Box 1, Folder 2


Computation of Harmonic
Measure by L. Ahlfors' Method, with L.K. Jackson, 1955. Box 1, Folder 2


Mathematics, with Ida
Rhodes. Journal of the Washington Academy of
Sciences , v.45:no.6, June 1955. Box 1, Folder 2


Criteria for the Choice of
an Integration Formula. April 1957. Box 1, Folder 2


Asymptotic Expansions for
the Odd Periodic Mathieu Functions.Transactions
of the American Mathematical Society, v.97:no.2:357366, November 1960. Box 1, Folder 2


Numerical Evaluation of
Continued Fractions,SIAM Review,
v.6:no.4:383421, October 1964. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 2 
Tables Relating to the Radial
Mathieu Functions, vol. 1: Functions of the First Kind. With D.S. Clemm.
Washington, D.C.: Aerospace Research Laboratories, undated. Box 2


Tables Relating to the Radial
Mathieu Functions, vol. 2: Functions of the Second Kind. With D.S.
Clemm. Washington, D.C.: Aerospace Research Laboratories, 1965. Box 2


Women in Mathematics.The Mathematics Student Journal, v.12:no.4,
May 1965. Box 1, Folder 2


Rendiconti del Circolo Matematico
di Palermo, ser.2, v.15, March 1966. Box 1, Folder 2


Tables Relating to Mathieu
Functions: Characteristic Values, Coefficients, and Joining Factors.
Washington, D.C.: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, 1967. Box 3, Folder 1


Handbook of Mathematical
Functions with Formulas, Graphs, and Mathematical Tables. Washington,
D.C.: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, 1968. Box 1, Folder 3

Box 2 
Mathieu's Equation for Complex
Parameters: Tables of Characteristic Values. With D.S. Clemm.
Washington, D.C.: Aerospace Research Laboratories, 1969. Box 2


The Double Points of
Mathieu's Differential Equation, with D.S. Clemm. Mathematics of Computation, v.23:no.105, January 1969. Box 1, Folder 2


Statistical Estimates for
the Random Errors in Tabular Differences, with Donald S. Clemm,
undated. Box 1, Folder 2

Box 3 
Errata slips, order forms for published
works. Box 3, Folder 2


Research Notes 
Box 3 
Mathieu Functions, 19651968. Box 3, Folder 3


Mathieu Functions, 1965 

Subsidiary Routines Mathieu Characteristic Values,
March 1966 

Solution of Mathieu's Equation, 1966, 1968 

Characteristic Exponent Mathieu Equation,
undated. 
Box 3 
Miscellaneous Research Notes, undated. Box 3, Folder 4


Ozalids 

Distribution Functions for n ^{th} Differences 

Bessel Functions J _{0} (x),
Y _{0} (x), J _{1} (x), Y _{1} (x) x > 8 (includes punch cards) 
Box 3 
Notes, 1983 Box 3, Folder 5


Notes, 1984 Box 3, Folder 6


Notes, 1985 Box 3, Folder 7

Box 4 
Notes, 1986 Box 4, Folder 1


Notes, 1988 Box 4, Folder 2


Notes, 1990 Box 4, Folder 3


Notes, 1991 Box 4, Folder 4


Notes, 1992 Box 4, Folder 5


Notes, 1993 Box 4, Folder 6


Notes, 1993 Box 4, Folder 7


Notes, 1994 Box 4, Folder 8


Notes "Gaussian", undated. Box 4, Folder 9

Box 5 
Notes, undated. Box 5, Folder 1


Notes, undated. Box 5, Folder 2


Notes, 19501953 Box 5, Folder 3


Unpublished Manuscripts, undated. 
Box 5 
Outline of (unpublished book) Box 5, Folder 4


Chapters 1, 2 Box 5, Folder 5


Chapter 3 Box 5, Folder 6

Box 6 
Chapters 4, 5 Box 6, Folder 1


Chapters 6, 7 Box 6, Folder 2


Chapters 6, 7 Box 6, Folder 3


Background notes, July 1993 Box 6, Folder 4


Undated typed manuscript Box 6, Folder 5


Supplementary programs Box 6, Folder 6


Miscellaneous papers Box 6, Folder 7


Writings by others, 18951969 
Box 7 
Leffler, Anna Carlotta. Sonya
Kovalevsky: Her Recollections of Childhood. New York: Century Company,
1895. Box 7, Folder 1


Mathieu, M. Emile. Mémoire sur le
Mouvement Vibratoire d'une Membrane de Forme Elliptique, undated. Box 7, Folder 2


Goldstein, S. Mathieu
Functions, undated. Box 7, Folder 2


Lanczos, Cornelius. Solution of
Systems of Linear Equations by Minimized Iterations. National Bureau of
Standards Report, Prepublication copy, 30 July 1951 Box 7, Folder 2


Juncosa, M.L., and David Young. Report no. 817: On the Convergence of a Solution of a
Difference Equation to a Solution of the Equation of Diffusion Project
no. TB30007K of the Research and Development Division, Ordnance Corps,
May 1952 Box 7, Folder 2


The Royal Society Mathematical Tables Committee.
Progress Report no. 6, March 1953 Box 7, Folder 2


University of Alberta. Mathematics 460 Exam,
April 1961 Box 7, Folder 2

Box 3 
Bramble, J.H. and L.E. Payne. Effect of Error in Measurement of Elastic Constants on the
Solutions of Problems in Classical Elasticity.Journal of Research, v.67B:no.3, JulySeptember 1963 Box 3, Folder 2

Box 7 
Bramble, J.H. and L.E. Payne. Some Mean Value Theorems in Elastostatics.J. Soc. Indust. Appl. Math., v.12:no.1, March 1964 Box 7, Folder 2


Rhodes, Donald R. On Some Double
Orthogonality Properties of the Spheroidal and Mathieu Functions,
1 May 1964 Box 7, Folder 2


Some Error Estimates for the
Characteristic Roots of a Symmetric Matrix, undated. Box 7, Folder 3


The Royal Society Mathematical
Tables Committee. Progress Report no. 18, April 1965 Box 7, Folder 3


Michaud, Françoise. Etude sur les
Representations Approchees des Solutions de l'Equation de Mathieu,
June 1965 Box 7, Folder 3


Sips, Robert. Nouvelle Méthode
pour le Calcul de l'Esposant Caractéristique de l'Éqation de
MathieuHill, Acad. Roy. Belg. Bull. Cl.
Sci., v.5:no.51, 1965 Box 7, Folder 3


Fichera, Gaetano. Approximation and Estimates for Eigenvalues.Numerical Solution Partial Differential Equations,
1966 Box 7, Folder 3


Fichera, G. Scientific Report no.
1: Structure of Green's Operators and Estimates for the Corresponding
Eigenvalues, October 1966 Box 7, Folder 3


Abate, J. and H. Dubner. A New
Method for Generating Power Series Expansions of Functions, April 1967 Box 7, Folder 3


Olver, F.W.J. Numerical
Solution of SecondOrder Linear Difference Equations.Journal of Research, v.71B:nos.23, AprilSeptember 1967 Box 7, Folder 3


Olver, F.W.J. Bounds for the
Solutions of SecondOrder Linear Difference Equations.Journal of Research, v.71B:no.4, OctoberDecember 1967 Box 7, Folder 3


Salzer, Herbert E. Interpolation by
Division, undated. Box 7, Folder 3


Gammel, J.L., C.C. Rousseau, and Dwight P. Saylor.
Kinetic Energy as a Perturbation. I. ,
undated. Box 7, Folder 3


A Theorem on Determinants of a
Special Form, undated. Box 7, Folder 3


Unidentified reprint, undated. Box 7, Folder 3


Canosa, Jose Box 7, Folder 4


A New Method for the Solution of
the Schrödinger Equation , May 1969 

Asymptotic Behavior of
SturmLiouville Systems , undated. 

Numerical Solution of Mathieu's
Equation , undated. 

Miscellaneous papers, undated. 

Photographs, 19351964 
Box 8 
Gertrude Blanch, circa 19351941 Box 8, Folder 1


Federal Woman's Award (with Pres. Lyndon Johnson, Dr.
Knox Millaps, Maj. Gen. Daniel E. Hooks), 3 March 1964 Box 8, Folder 2


Exceptional Civilian Service Award (with Maj. Gen. Don
R. Ostrander), 1964 Box 8, Folder 3


Federal Woman of the Year Award (with Mr. Eugene M.
Zuckert), 1964 Box 8, Folder 4


Department of the Air Force Certificate of Service,
undated. Box 8, Folder 5


Unidentified personal snapshots, undated. Box 8, Folder 6


Unidentified photographsGertrude Blanch alone,
undated. Box 8, Folder 7


Unidentified photographsGertrude Blanch with others,
undated. Box 8, Folder 8


Correspondence, 19571994 
Box 8 
Personal, 19621994 Box 8, Folder 9


Professional, 19571967 Box 8, Folder 10


Professional, 19681987 Box 8, Folder 11


Biographical Materials, 19321989 
Box 8 
Documents Box 8, Folder 12


Papers for name change, 1932. 

Affidavits of birth, 1935. 

Certificate of Citizenship, 1936. 

Letter regarding federal service, 1956. 

Department of the Air Force Certificate of Service,
1962. 

American Association for the Advancement of Science
Fellow Certificate, 1963. 

Department of the Air Force Special Service
Certificate, 1963. 

United States Air Force Office of Aerospace Research
Senior Citizens Award, 1964. 

Federal Woman's Award Certificate, undated. 

Correspondence regarding immigration, 1966. 

Affidavit of high school graduation, 1966. 

American Society of Mechanical Engineers Certificate,
1972. 

Related Materials and Items 
Box 8 
Employment documents, 19541965 Box 8, Folder 13


Federal Woman's Award Papers, 1964 Box 8, Folder 14

Box 9 
Festschrift: Blanch Anniversary
Volume , 21 February 1967 Box 9, Folder 1


Miscellaneous papers, 1953 Box 9, Folder 2


Clippings 
Box 9 
Newspaper clippings about Gertrude Blanch,
1963, 1964. Box 9, Folder 3


Audiotapes 
Box 9 
Interview with Henry Thatcher, 17 March 1989. Box 9, Folder 4


Interview with Michael Stern, undated. Box 9, Folder 4

