Author: Sue Hill

MTU Physics Department History | Rolland Otis Keeling, Jr.

Rolland Otis Keeling, Jr.

b. 13 August 1925, Hillsboro, IN
d. 13 October 2000, Houghton, MI

A.B. Wabash College, 1950
M.S. Penn State, 1952
Ph.D. Penn State, 1954

Research Physicist, Gulf Research and Development, Pittsburgh 1954-1960
Assoc. Prof. Physics, MCMT 1961-1963
Prof. Physics, MCMT/MTU, 1963-1985

Physics Department Head 1978-1985
Member Grace United Church, American Legion
Sigma Pi Sigma, Phi Beta Kappa
Served in Army 1943-1946
Bowled, with wife Esther, in MTU Faculty/Staff Bowling League

MTU Physics Department History | Elmer Daniel Grant

Elmer Daniel Grant

b. 25 Feb 1873, Delhi, NY
d. 5 Sept 1935, Richmond, IN

AB, Colgate University, 1895
AM, U of Chicago, 1897
(Thesis Title: Determination of the apparent size of a given ellipsoid as seen from a given exterior point, advisor: Bolza)
PhD, U of Chicago, 1916
(Thesis Title: The Motion of a Flexible Cable in a Vertical Plane, advisor: Moulton)

Inst. Mathematics, Lewis Institute (now part of IIT), 1896-1899
Inst. Math and Physics, Mich. College of Mines, 1900-1904
Asst. Prof. Math and Physics, Mich. College of Mines, 1904-1915
Assoc. Prof. Math and Physics, Mich. College of Mines, 1915-1920
Prof. and Dept. Head Math, Earlham College, 1920-1935
Registrar 1925-1930, Acting Dean 1933-1935, Earlham College

MTU Physics Department History | Fay Lilford Partlo

Fay Lilford Partlo

b. 23 Mar 1901, Fairgrove, MI
d. 7 Aug 1996

EM, Mich College Mines, 1923
BS, Mich College Mines, 1926
Ph.M., U of Wisconsin, 1930

Asst. In Mathematics, MCM, 1922
Instr. Math and Physics, MCM 1923-1925
Asst. Prof. Math and Physics, MCMT, 1926-1935
Assoc. Prof. Math and Physics, MCMT, 1936-1943
Prof. Physics, MCMT, 1944-1953.
Physics Department Head, MCMT, 1944-1947.
Dean of College, MCMT, 1947-1953.
President, S. Dakota School of Mines, 1954-1966.
Prof. Physics, S. Dakota School of Mines, 1966-1971.

MTU Physics Department History | Nathan Sanford Osborne

Nathan Sanford Osborne

b. 10 Feb 1875, Southampton, N.Y.
d. 1943

EM Michigan College of Mines 1899
Hon. Sc. D. Stevens Inst. of Technology 1930
Hon. Doctor of Engineering MCMT 1936

Asst. in Physics, Mich School Mines, 1896
Instr. Math and Physics, Mich College of Mines, 1897-1899
Mining Engineer, Champion Copper Co. & E J Longyear Co., 1899-1900
Inst. Math and Physics, Michigan College of Mines, 1901-1903
Lab Assistant, US Bureau of Standards, 1903-1906
Asst. Physicist, US Bureau of Standards, 1906-1910
Inst. Math and Physics, Michigan College of Mines, 1910-1912
Assoc. Physicist, US Bureau of Standards, 1912-1919
Physicist, US Bureau of Standards, 1919-1928
Principal Physicist, US Bureau of Standards, 1928-1939

Most noted for calorimetric measurements at the Bureau of Standards which were essential to make accurate steam tables. Author of many Bureau of Standards (NBS) publications.

MTU Physics Department History | Thomas Croxford Sermon

Thomas Croxford Sermon

b. 25 July 1903, Superior, WI
d. 1 Feb 1983, Houghton, MI

A.B. Central State Teacher’s College, MI, 1929
B.S. Mining Eng, MCMT, 1936
M.S. Geophysics, MCMT, 1940
(Thesis Title: A null current indicator)

Instr. Math and Physics, MCMT, 1926-1938
Asst. Prof Math and Physics, MCMT, 1939-1943
Assoc. Prof. Physics, MCMT, 1944-1947
Prof. Physics, MCMT/MTU, 1948-1970
Physics Department Head 1948-1954
Registrar, MCMT/MTU, 1954-1970
Director of Student Services, MTU, 1964-1970

MTU Physics Department History | Fisher Hall

Construction began on a new Physics and Mathematics Building in 1962. Shortly before the groundbreaking, James Fisher, Jr., passed away. Fisher had been Professor and Department head of Mathematics and Physics for over 40 years, on the faculty for 50 years, and after his mandatory retirement in 1944, he remained active, especially with the alumni association. He was a Michigan Mining School graduate (1893) and Hancock native and he was much respected in the community. In recognition of his contributions to Michigan Tech and the community, the new building was named for him and was dedicated to him when it opened in 1964.

Fisher Hall Photo
Fisher Hall in 1981, from the US-41 Side (the back)

MTU Physics Department History | Fred Walter McNair

Fred Walter McNair

b. 3 December 1862, Fennimore, WI
d. 30 June 1924, in a train wreck near Buda, IL.

B.S. U. of Wisconsin (1891)
Hon. D. Sc., Lafayette College (1907).
Hon. D. Sc., Rhode Island State College (1919).

Inst. Mathematics, U of Wisconsin 1889-1891
Asst. Prof. Math, Michigan Agricultural College, Fall 1891-1893
Prof. Math and Physics, Michigan College of Mines, 1893-1924
President, Michigan College of Mines, 1899-1924

During World War I worked with U.S. Bureau of Standards and later worked on firing methods for large Naval guns (unpublished).

Member of Grace United Methodist Church in Houghton. His home was at the corner of Houghton and Hubbell Ave, where the Southwest corner of the Memorial Union is currently located.

MTU Physics Department History | Arthur Edwin Haynes

Arthur Edwin Haynes

b. 23 May 1849, Van Buren (near Baldwinsville), NY
d. 12 March 1915, Minneapolis, MN

B.S. Hillsdale College, 1875
M.S. 1877, M. Ph. 1879, Hillsdale College
Hon. Sc. D., 1896

Inst. Math and Physics, Hillsdale College, 1875
Acting Prof. Math and Physics, Hillsdale College, 1876
Prof. Math and Physics, Hillsdale College, 1876-1890
Prof. Math and Physics, Michigan College of Mines, 1890-1893
Asst. Prof. Math 1893-1896, College of Eng., University of Minnesota
Prof. Math, 1896-1901, College of Eng., University of Minnesota
Prof. Engineering Math, 1901-1912, University of Minnesota
Retired 1912.

MTU Physics Department History | Irwin Roman

Irwin Roman

b. 2 May 1893, St. Louis, MO
d. 29 May 1976, Baltimore, MD

AB, Washington (St Louis), 1913
AM Chicago, 1915
PhD Chicago, 1920
(Thesis Title: The Transformation of Waves through a Symmetrical Optical Instrument, advisor – Arthur C. Lunn. See Phys. Rev. 18, 62-77 (1921).)

Inst. Math, Northwestern, 1916-1923
Assoc. Prof. Math, Vanderbilt, 1923-1925
Mathematical Physicist, Amerada Corp. And Geophys. Research Corp., 1925-30
Consulting Mathematical Physicist, 1930-1931
Asst. Prof. Math and Physics, Michigan College of Mining and Technology, 1931-1935
(Was on leave the last year to do ground resistivity studies in Southern Nevada)
Senior Geophysicist, US Bur. Of Mines and Geological Survey (USGS), 1935-