Chemical Engineering was established in 1917 as an independent department reporting directly to the President's Office; it was incorporated into the School of Engineering in 1932. The academic program in chemical engineering, also known as industrial chemistry, prepared undergraduate and graduate students for work in the chemical industry. Chemical engineering faculty are also involved in research to develop new technologies critical to Northwest industries such as electronics materials processing, forest products, and food science. During the 1950s, the department offered courses in nuclear engineering.
The Chemical Engineering Building was completed in 1955 with specialized teaching and research laboratories. It was later renamed in honor of George Gleeson. Gleeson joined the Oregon State faculty in chemical engineering in 1928; he was Chemical Engineering Department Head from 1937 until 1944, when he became the Dean of Engineering. J.S. Walton became the department head in 1945.
The Chemical Engineering Department Records document the teaching and research activities of the department, primarily during the period that J.S. Walton was department head in the 1940s and 1950s. The records include general reference files and records documenting the construction of the Chemical Engineering Building. The reference files consist primarily of correspondence, reports, publications, clippings, and related materials. They provide information about department faculty and graduate students, professional societies, honors, and awards. The reference files include materials pertaining to various research topics including atomic energy, electrostatic separation, mining and ores, raw materials, radioactive dating, polymerization, pollution, and stream improvement. The reference files are available only on microfilm. The materials pertaining to the Chemical Engineering Building are in paper form.
Restrictions on Access :
Collection is open for research.Preferred Citation :
Chemical Engineering Department Records (RG 153), Oregon State University Archives, Corvallis, Oregon.
The records are arranged in two series: I. General Reference File, 1930-1966 and II. Chemical Engineering Building Construction Records, 1949-1954.
Acquisition Information :
The records were transferred to the Archives in at least two accessions in 1980 and earlier.Related Materials :
Additional materials pertaining to chemical engineering instruction and research are part of the College of Engineering Records (RG 062). The Facilities Services Records (RG 193) include materials documenting the construction of Gleeson Hall. The Memorabilia Collection includes clippings and other ephemeral items pertaining to the department.
Detailed Description of the Collection
Series I consists of correspondence, reports, and related materials primarily created or assembled by department chair J.S. Walton during the 1940s and 1950s. The records document the teaching, research, and outreach activities of the department and include materials pertaining to professional societies; graduate students and faculty; and topics such as atomic energy, electrostatic separation, mining and ores, raw materials, radioactive dating, pollution and stream improvement,
Series II documents the planning and construction of the Chemical Engineering Building (Gleeson Hall). It includes correspondence and proposed specifications prepared in 1949 for a Chemical and Mining Engineering Building and the 1954 specifications for general construction and mechanical and electrical work on the Chemical Engineering Building.