Guide to the Papers of Walter Stockmayer, 1901 - 2004Manuscript ML-108

Biography

Born in Rutherford, New Jersey, 7 April 1914, Stockmayer graduated from Rutherford High School in 1928 and received an S.B. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) in 1935. He won a Rhodes scholarship and attended Jesus College of Oxford University in the UK from 1935-1937 where he earned a B.Sc. He earned his Ph.D. in Chemistry from M.I.T. under the direction of J.A. Beattie in 1940. During World War II, he contributed to classified war research projects while at Columbia University. After the war, he returned to M.I.T. faculty and was awarded a Full Professorship there in 1952. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1956. Professor Stockmayer joined faculty at Dartmouth College in 1961 and, before his official retirement in 1979, served twice as Chairman of the Department of Chemistry. He was awarded an honorary degree by Dartmouth in 1983. He continued to teach and advise Dartmouth undergraduate and graduate students through 2002. Stockmayer is widely recognized as one of the pioneers of polymer science in the twentieth century, with specific interest in theory and experimentation of the structure and dynamics of polymer molecules. Professor Stockmayer served for more than 20 years as a founding associate editor of "Macromolecules", a premier journal of the field published by the American Chemical Society. He was a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, as well as recipient of the Peter Debye Award, the Manufacturing Chemists Association Teacher of the Year Award, the Stas Medal of the Belgian Chemical Society, the Oesper Award of the University of Cincinnati, the Humboldt Senior Scientist Award, the William Proctor Prize of Sigma Xi, and the Polymer Physics Award from the American Chemical Society. He was also awarded the National Medal of Science by President Reagan in 1987. Stockmayer held honorary degrees from Dartmouth College, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and The University Louis-Pasteur of Strasbourg in France, as well as being an Honorary Fellow of Jesus College of Oxford University. At the time of his death, Professor Stockmayer was the only non-German national to receive the Hermann Staudinger Prize from the German Chemical Society, awarded to him in 1999. Stockmayer performed various consulting activities with E.I. DuPont and Co., American Chicle Co., Humble Oil Co., and the US Army-Piccatiny Arsenal. Professor Stockmayer died 9 May 2004, at 90 years of age.

Finding Aids