Beckman at 25: Seymour Mauskopf

Seymour Mauskopf.

2012 is the 25th anniversary of CHF’s Beckman Center for the History of Chemistry. To celebrate the Beckman Center’s remarkable achievements and its many accomplished fellows, we will be profiling one former fellow each month over the course of the year. This month we’d like to introduce you to Seymour Mauskopf. Seymour (Sy to those who know him) was one of our very first fellows; with us in 1988-89 as an Edelstein Fellow studying the history of explosives and gunpowder, he was also a Price Fellow in 1999-2000, looking at the experimental study of munitions.

One of the leaders in the field of history of chemistry, Sy is responsible for the resurrection of the Forum for the History of the Chemical Sciences group within the History of Science Society (a group about which he was so enthusiastic that he even did a little dance outside the hotel elevators on his way its early morning planning meeting).

Sy received his B.A. from Cornell University and his Ph.D. from Princeton University in the history of science. His fields of research interest are the history of chemistry and the history of marginal science (parapsychology). In 1998, he received the Dexter Award for Outstanding Contributions to the History of Chemistry from the American Chemical Society. He taught history of science at Duke University since 1964 (receiving the Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching Award in 2006) and retired at the end of 2010. He is currently working on a book on Alfred Nobel’s interactions with British munitions scientists in the late nineteenth century.

We are proud to call Sy one of ours (twice over). If you are interested in learning more about his work, take a look at some of his books: Crystals and Compounds, 1976, Chemical Sciences in the Modern World, 1993 and The Elusive Science (with Michael R. McVaugh)1980.

Carin Berkowitz is the associate director of CHF’s Beckman Center for the History of Chemistry.

CHF Leads Nation in Fellowships in the History of Science [CHF News]

Posted In: Fellows

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