Document Type


Publication Date


Published In

Historical Journal of Massachusetts


The nuclear testing program the United States conducted in the Pacific a half-century ago was a national event with life-altering consequences for ordinary citizens who participated in the undertaking. This is the story of Dick Clayton, a Dorchester resident who struggled for years to find meaningful employment before securing his dream job at a local electronics firm with links to the Manhattan Project. Clayton’s career took off during an economic boom fueled by the expansion of defense spending after World War II; on assignment at Eniwetok in the Marshall Islands during the height of the atomic age, he engaged in the important work he had always craved. He paid a price for his unexpected brush with history—his health suffered in the aftermath—but he also discovered his life’s work and became a productive member of his community.


© Institute for Massachusetts Studies, Westfield State University

Included in

History Commons