Title and Description Page
Family Background and Early Education 1
Paternal background as sea captains; maternal ties to entomology and Jacob Hübner, the first man to catalog North American butterflies. Recollections as only child in Norfolk, Virginia; praise for high school teachers. Early home laboratory and interest in studying chemistry and pursuing chemistry career. MIT's reputation after World War II and decision to attend there.
College and Graduate Education at MIT 5
Atmosphere and social life at Boston and MIT upon arrival in late 1940s. Curriculum, professors, meeting and working with J. D. Roberts. Changes in organic chemistry in 1950s. Undergraduate thesis with Roberts. Graduate work with Roberts and A. C. Cope. Factors influencing decisions about post-Ph.D. work and decision to accept position at DuPont. Interactions with T. L. Cairns and Cairns' role building DuPont's Chemical Department. Relationships with Cope and Roberts and dissertation on benzyne, trans-cyclooctene oxide, and cyclobutenes obtained from adducts of acetylene. MIT lab atmosphere and colleagues.
Early DuPont Career 17
First position in Central Research Department and overall company organization. Memories of job interview, salaries, and promotions. Interest in research vs. management career. First assignments. Publishing at DuPont and Cairns' role. Polyacetylene research and move into fluoroketone area. Work on cyclopropane synthesis. Work with R. Smith, E. Blanchard, W. Phillips, and with Roberts as consultant. Research on thiacyanocarbons. Patent on cyclopropanation reaction. Research Supervisor career. Recruiting. Origins of work with R. B. Woodward, work with Woodward's former student T. Fukunaga and predilection for Asian coworkers. Publications in 1960s and move into theoretical work. Relationship with R. Pariser. Interests in quantum chemistry and topology.
DuPont Programs and Culture 31
Cairns' program of interaction and exchange with European universities. Tour of Europe in 1960 and continuing visits to German universities. Later DuPont recruitment of European scientists. History of movement of many CRD recruits into industrial departments and management careers. Company support for publication in Journal of Chemical Physics and elsewhere. Company support for basic research; changes in support levels under varied leadership and after mid-eighties. Attitudes surrounding acquiring Conoco.
Later DuPont Research and Career 38
Publications in 1960s, including spiroconjugation work. Sabbatical in 1968, Visiting Professorship at Harvard and work with Woodward. Work with R. Merrifield. Promotions from Associate Director of Research through Vice President of CRD. Collaboration with C. H. Park in synthesizing macrobiotic amines, large rings containing hydrocarbon cavities, and on crown ether work. Relationships with work of Nobel Laureates C. Pederson and J. M. Lehn. Research on acetylenedicarbonyl fluoride, tetraazatridecane. Position at University of Delaware as adjunct professor and work teaching and advising graduate students. Cyclopropanation work. Visiting professorship at University of Chicago.
Reflections on CRD Directorship and Final Stages of Career 49
CRD's agenda, organization, and operations as Director. Accomplishments in life sciences during 1980s. Discoveries in modern superconductivity business. Development of Freon replacements. Promotion to Senior Science Advisor. Retirement and local activities. Sons' backgrounds and careers at DuPont. Contributions to and pride in recruitment at DuPont. National Academy of Sciences work leading to Prudent Practices in the Laboratory. Views on scientific misconduct.