DR. JOHN ARTHUR WILSON 1922 + 1928 ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT DIARIES HANDWRITTEN BY ONE OF AMERICA'S MOST NOTED CHEMISTS
Milwaukee, Wisconsin WI 1922 Very Good+ Manuscript
On offer are original 1922 and 1928 manuscript diaries handwritten by noted chemist Dr. John Arthur Wilson. Dr. Wilson was one of the most distinguished chemists in America at the time and was so renowned that his scientific articles and papers were translated into many foreign languages and published in scientific journals throughout the world. These diaries detail and document his busy business and social life: he writes of working in his lab, writing his book, doing research, going to Jones Island, attending matinees, giving lectures at different universities, attending many dinners & meetings (related to work). He writes of having lunch at Pfister and going to the Athletic Club. He frequently "called on the folks in the evening". A highlight of this diary is when he writes daily about a vacation to California on the Gold State Limited train. The trip lasted from June 3 to June 25, 1922. Here are some snippets: January 26, 1922: "Had luncheon at the Pfister with Statton, Copeland and Steisig. Discussed problems pertaining to the experimental work at Jones Island." February 17, 1922: "Attended dinner and meeting of the Chemical Society at the Medford. Prof. Harkins spoke on "How Atoms are Built and the Nature of Isotopes." April 12, 1922: "Showed the tannery and laboratories to members of the senior chemistry class of the University of Wisconsin in the afternoon. Called on the folks in the evening." May 12, 1922: "Was the guest of the Shriners at luncheon. Addressed them on Water Filtration." June 3, 1922: "Mother, W., Woogie & I left for California at 2:00 P.M. Harold & Mildred met us at the station. Left Chicago on the Golden State Limited (Rock Island) at 6:30 P.M. (R.R. time). June 4, 1922: "The train stopped for nearly an hour at Kansas City. Strolled around the city near the station." June 5, 1922: "Our train was delayed for 2-1/2 hours at Corona, New Mexico by a freight engine breaking down on our track. Strolled around the station at El Paso during our short stay." June 6, 1922: "Our train made up all of its lost time, reaching Yuma on time. Our car was switched onto the San Diego and Arizona Railway. Had a delightful ride from Yuma to San Diego, across a desert, through the Carrisso Gorge, and through parts of Mexico. Reached San Diego at 2:45 P.M. Registered at the U.S. Grant Hotel. June 7, 1922: "Motored over to TiaJuana in Mexico, where we spent an hour, and then to Coronado, where we had luncheon at the the Hotel del Coronado and then spent most of the afternoon on the beach." June 11, 1922: "Visited the Pickford-Fairbanks Studio and witnessed part of the filming of the new Robin Hood picture." June 12, 1922: "Left Los Angeles at 9:00 A.M. and arrived at Santa Catalina Island at 12:15 (via S.S. Avalon). Registered at Hotel St. Catherine." June 21, 1922: "Arrived at Salt Lake City at 1:40 P.M. Registered at Hotel Utah. Visited the Mormon Tabernacle and then went for a drive around the city. Although it was hot in the city, snow-capped peaks were plainly visible." June 22, 1922: "In the morning motored out to the curious mining town of Bingham to see the great Utah Copper Mine. Spent the afternoon at Saltair and had a delightful swim in Great Salt Lake." Sept 7, 1922: "I was elected Chairman of the Leather Division." Sept 9, 1922: "Visited Phoenix Leather Tannery Company. Showed process of making leather." Dec. 17, 1922: "Completed manuscript of the Monograph The Chemisty Of Leather Manufacture. Duplicate shipped to Professor John Johnston at Yale Univ." Dec 25, 1922: Saw Robin Hood at the Alhambra. We had seen part of the filming of this picture on June 11." At the back of the 1922 diary he lists his 1921 income as $8,412.40, with "taxes" of $304.29. Some of the 1928 entries: January 9, 1928: "Prof. Men's Club at noon. Dr. E.W. Wenstrand and Mr. E.A. Bacon Jr. spoke on "What It Means to Be a Non-Professional Artist." Chemists Circle at the Astor in the evening. I was installed as President for 1928 and spoke on "Recent Developments at the Sewage Disposal Plant." February 17, 1928: "Lectured to the pupils of Lincoln High School on "Positions in Industrial Chemistry." Attended a meeting of the Milwaukee Tanners Association." February 29, 1928: "Saw "Two Girls Wanted" at the Davidson after which we joined Nola and Bill at the Club and danced." March 27, 1928: "Director's meeting of Prof. Men's Club at noon. In the evening, presided over the annual meeting of the Security Management Co. 110 attended dinner. Mr. Puslicker was the principal speaker. Was re-eleced a director and president of the company." March 8, 1928: "Called on the Borns to hear Freddy's new 5-tube, 1500 volt amplifier. Got caught in blizzard on the way." April 11, 1928: "Saw Ethel Barrymore in The Constant Wife at the Davidson. April 30, 1928: "Prof. Men's Club, Frank Vaughn spoke on the "FUTURE OF COMMERCIAL AVIATION".May 23, 1928: "Saw "Pirates of Penzance" at the Davidson after which we danced at the Club." June 5, 1928: "Reached Syracuse at noon. Spent the afternoon with Mr. Webb visiting the Nettleton shoe factory. Left Syracuse at 5:30, spent a few hours in Albany and then started on for Boston." Aug 20, 1928: "Prof. Men's Club at noon - Heller described experiences hunting lions in Africa." September 8, 1928: "Reached New York at 5:30 P.M. Registered at the Commodore. Saw Dennis King in "The Three Musketeers" at the Lyric." September 11, 1928: "Attended the first session of the Leather Division in the afternoon. Sonia & Frank dined with us at the Ocean House. Received a letter from Reed telling of my election to the presidency of the Am. Leather Chemists Association." Sept 24, 1928: "Prof Men's Club, Fred Homer spoke on "Why an engineer should be President of the United States." October 6, 1928: "Attended football game between Notre Dame and Wisconsin. Received letter from Prof McKee announcing that I had been awarded the CHANDLER METAL." December 7, 1928: "Attended a dinner given in my honor by the trustees of Columbia University, after which I gave the Chandler lecture and received the Chandler Medal." BIO NOTES: He was Chief Chemist at A.F. Gallun & Son's and "he was awarded the Nichols Medal for the year 1931 at the meeting of the New York Section of the American Chemical Society on March 13, 1931 in recognition of his outstanding achievement in colloid chemist applied particularly to leather and sanitation". The American Leather Chemistry Association was founded in 1903. In 1959 Salem Oil & Grease Company established and financed a memorial lecture as a memorial to Dr. Wilson to be given at each annual meeting of the ALCA. It was designated as the "John Arthur Wilson Memorial Lecture", with awards still being given out today. Both of these diaries are in excellent condition for their age, with tight, clean pages, no marks, rips, tears or loose binding and no musty smells. These were very well cared for and Dr. Wilson's handwriting is very easy to read (no blurring of lines or smeared ink). The front of the diary he writes his address as: 203 Juneau Ave, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They both measure 3" x 5". VG+.