Allen M. Hornblum
|Allen M. Hornblum|
|Alma mater||Penn State University
|Genre||Non-fiction, history, bioethics|
|Notable works||Acres of Skin
The Invisible Harry Gold
Allen M. Hornblum is an author, journalist and a former criminal justice official and political organizer based in Philadelphia. He has written five non-fiction books with his first book Acres of Skin published in 1998. The book detailed the human experimentation at Holmesburg Prison. The publication of Acres of Skin attracted considerable international media interest. Subsequently, Hornblum wrote Sentenced to Science, a book about the experience of an African American inmate in Holmesburg prison.
Hornblum's latest book Against Their Will co-authored with Judith Newman and Gregory Dober was released in 2013.
After completing his master's degree from Villanova University, Hornblum went to Holmesburg prison to direct an adult literacy program in 1971. There he noticed several inmates with arms striped with gauze pads and adhesive tape. He later learned that medical experiments had been conducted on the inmates for the last 20 years. Hornblum spent 10 years as a literacy instructor and sat on the board of the Pennsylvania Prison Society. He was appointed to the Philadelphia Board of Prison Trustees in 1986. While serving as a prison trustee, he actively participated in a proposal to allow prisoners the right to have condoms. However, the proposal was turned down. Hornblum also served as the executive director of the Americans for Democratic Action and worked at the Pennsylvania Crime Commission to investigate organized crime and public corruption.
In 1990, he became chief of staff to Philadelphia Sheriff, He resigned from the Sheriff's Office in 1994 to research and write a book about the history of the Holmesburg medical experiments. The book was released under the title Acres of Skin in 1998.
He has also been lecturer of history and Urban Studies at Temple University. Hornblum has lectured on his research and books at the British Medical Association, the National Institutes of Health and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. In March 2014, News Works reported that Hornblum was working on a biography about Bill Tilden.
Acres of Skin
In 1998, Hornblum published a book titled Acres of Skin: Human Experiments at Holmesburg Prison. The book documents clinical non-therapeutic medical experiments on prison inmates at Holmesburg Prison in Philadelphia from 1951 to 1974, conducted under the direction of dermatologist Albert Kligman. These abuses terminated with the scandal surrounding the Tuskegee syphilis experiment and the mind control experiments of the CIA. Hornblum is most critical of Kligman, who ran the experiments for two decades. Hornblum, along with George Holmes, also produced a documentary film about the Holmesburg Medical Research Program entitled, Acres of Skin - The Documentary.
Confessions of a Second Story Man
Confessions of a Second Story Man: Junior Kripplebauer and the K&A Gang is the second book by Hornblum. The book tells the story of the K&A Gang, an Irish crime group that was in existence from the early 1950s to the late 1970s in Philadelphia.
Sentenced to Science
Sentenced to Science: One Black Man's Story of Imprisonment in America was released in 2007. It is a personal narrative of Edward (Yusef) Anthony's time at Holmesburg. The book discusses the experiments conducted on Anthony and how the experiments affected his life afterwards.
The Invisible Harry Gold 
In 2011, Hornblum released The Invisible Harry Gold: The Man Who Gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb, a book about the life of Harry Gold, an American spy in the Soviet underground. In the mid-1940s, Gold took atomic secrets from Klaus Fuchs and gave them to the Soviet Union. Hornblum, in his book, addresses the attacks made upon Gold’s character by Rosenberg supporters over the years. Hornblum spent eight years researching and writing the book and interviewed over 50 people as well as obtained recordings of jail house interviews with Gold conducted by his legal team.
Against Their Will
While researching Acres of Skin about medical experiments on inmates in Holmesburg Prison, Hornblum came across documentation about similar experiments conducted on children and infants. He started researching about such experiments in 2008. In 2013, he released Against Their Will: The Secret History of Medical Experimentation on Children in Cold War America co-authored with Judith Newman and Gregory Dober. The book discusses the institutions where children were conscripted into medical experiments during the mid 20th century. The book provides multiple examples of medical experiments performed on developmentally delayed and physically disabled children at multiple institutions across the US. It was published by Palgrave Macmillan.
- Acres of Skin: Acres of Skin: Human Experiments at Holmesburg Prison (1998) ISBN 978-0415923361
- Philadelphia's City Hall (PA) (Images of America) (2003) ISBN 978-0738513409
- Confessions of a Second Story Man: Junior Kripplebauer and the K&A Gang (2006) ISBN 978-1569804995
- Sentenced to Science: One Black Man's Story of Imprisonment in America (2007) ISBN 978-0271033365
- The Invisible Harry Gold: The Man Who Gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb (2010) ISBN 978-0300156768
- Against Their Will: The Secret History of Medical Experimentation on Children in Cold War America (2013) ISBN 978-0230341715
- "Uncovering the truth". Northeast Times. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "ALLEN HORNBLUM is an expert in criminal justice and is the author of the book, Acres of Skin". NPR. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Right To Consent?". Science Progress. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Studying prison experiments Research". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Allen M. Hornblum". Penn State University. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Trustee Says He's Fired For Doing Well". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Prison Trustees To Consider Condom Distribution". Philly.com. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Prison Board Rejects Condoms For Cons". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "A Quiet Man to Explosive Effect". The Jewish Daily Forward. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Our next Research Ethics Series Lecturer, Allen Hornblum, is speaking on October 21st". Penn State University. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Sentenced to Science". Penn State University Press. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Effort afoot to honor Germantown tennis legend who made his mark on and off the court". News Works. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Allen M. Hornblum, Acres of Skin: Human Experiments at Holmesburg Prison. New York:1998". University of Albany. Archived from the original on 31 December 2014. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Activist Documents Experiments on 'Volunteer' Inmates in Philadelphia". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Video tells searing story Inmates recount harmful experiments in documentary". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 24 April 2014.
- "Robbin' Hood". Philadelphia Weekly. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "A legendary (alleged) burglar sues to protect his, um, good reputation". City Paper. Archived from the original on 20 March 2013. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "'Sentenced to Science'". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
- "A Real James Bond?". Whitaker Chambers. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "BOOK REVIEW: His service to Soviet intelligence". The Washington Times. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Book Review: Accidental Spy". Weekly Standard. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "New Book Documents Cold War Experiments On Kids". CBS Local. Retrieved 19 April 2013.
- "'Against Their Will' looks at children used for tests". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 19 April 2014.