Preface. Remarks on the notes and bibliographies. List of archival sources consulted. List of abbreviations. Part I - The Post-War Emergence of High-Energy Physics. From cosmic-ray and nuclear physics to high-energy physics (U. Mersits). Part II - The Prehistory of CERN, 1949 - February 1952. The first suggestions, 1949 - June 1950 (D. Pestre). The fusion of the initiatives, June - December 1950 (D. Pestre). The period of informed optimism, December 1950 - August 1951 (D. Pestre). The period of conflict, August - December 1951 (D. Pestre). The establishment of a Council of Representatives of European States, December 1951 - February 1952 (D. Pestre). Part III - The Provisional CERN, February 1952 - October 1954. Survey of developments (J. Krige). Case studies of some important decisions (J. Krige). Collection of photographs and documents of historic interest. Part IV - National Decisions to Join CERN. French attitudes to the European Laboratory, 1949 - 1954 (D. Pestre). The Italian scenario (L. Belloni). Germany's part in the setting-up of CERN (A. Hermann). Britain and the European Laboratory Project: 1951 - mid-1952 (J. Krige). Britain and the European Laboratory Project: mid-1952 - December 1953 (J. Krige). Part V - Concluding Remarks. The how and the why of the birth of CERN (J. Krige and D. Pestre). Appendices: Who's who in the Foundation of CERN (A. Hermann); Chronology of Events (J. Krige and D. Pestre). Name index. Thematic subject index.