Date: Fri, 6 Nov 2009 21:10:59 -0500
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Subject: 12 RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

From: "Foesier, Jeremy" <Foesier.Jeremy**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 11:47:47 AM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

Serendipity by Royston M. Roberts is a good book, accidental discoveries in Science


Jeremy  C. Foesier J
Main Operations Lab
Syncrude Canada Ltd.
Ph. 780-790-8217
Fax  780-790-4850 

From: Andrew Gross <gross.drew**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 7:10:53 PM EST
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?


Being it sounds like you just want to educate yourself to be a better
overall instructor why not do what I love to do on my free
time...random wiki clicking.  start with googleing "history of
chemistry wiki" and just click away from there.  Its bound to be far
more exciting then droling thought a text book.  Might not be
"officially correct" but most people who post false facts stay away
from science stuff.  Its not like your going to try to get published
on what you read.


From: Todd <p3wt3r**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 3:04:07 PM EST
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

Hi Barbara

Isaac Asimov wrote a number of history of science books (including chapters on chemistry) that are very entertaining, as well as factual, although they are very hard to find. The books that I remember as having sections on the history of chemistry include:

View from a height
Adding a dimension
X stands for unknown
As far as the human eye could see

Good luck,

Todd Perkins

From: "Janan Hayes" <jmhayes**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 12:28:01 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

Have you opened a wonderful door.  I am chair of the ACS Division of History of Chemistry.  We have a number of resources through our Bulletin. 
You can reach our website at inzv/HIST/  .
Another good resource is the National Historic Chemical Landmarks program of the ACS.  They can be reached at the ACS website: and then search Landmarks in the upper right search box.


Regarding actual books on the subject.  There are many.  My favorites are:
Cathy Cobb and Harold Goldwhite, Creations of Fire: Chemistry's Lively History from Alchemy to the Atomic Age, published in paper back by Perseus in 2001.
Also from the Chemical Heritage Foundation:  Chemical Achievers which is available on-line from CHF at . They have a large listing of materials for teaching under the Classroom Resources tab on their website.


This should give you a start.  But I would be pleased to communicate with you or others.  This is my passion.  Before my retirement I spent 32 years teaching chemistry and physical science in the California Community College system.  I am also co-director of Project Inclusion which is devoted to the inclusion of the chemical impact of all peoples, places and times into the teaching of chemistry.


Jan Hayes


Dr. Janan M. Hayes,  2009 Chair, ACS Division of History of Chemistry
Director-at-large, ACS Board of Directors

From: "Chris Marlowe" <krismarlowe**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 8:27:55 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?



Anyone who wants to know about the history of chemistry would be well advised to start with


I can't swear that you'll find the web site interesting, because I have not spent much time there. As they say, YMMV.
Stay healthy,


Chris Marlowe
42 Highlander Dr
Scotch Plains, NJ  07076
908 / 754 - 5160 (home)
732 / 539 - 8128 (cell)
Krismarlowe**At_Symbol_Here** < /font>



From: "Mark Meszaros" <mmeszaros**At_Symbol_Here** gt;
Date: November 6, 2009 6:29:58 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

It is not a book about the history of chemistry, but it is a very readable and enjoyable book about 17 molecules that have changed the world. It is full of interesting anecdotes about how chemistry has influenced history, from the age of exploration to World War I to the wonder drugs of the 20th century.  The book is Napoleon=92s Buttons by Penny Le Couteur and Jay Burreson.
Mark W Meszaros
Scholar Chemistry
VWR Education


From: "NEAL LANGERMAN" <neal**At_Symbol_Here**>< /font>
Date: November 6, 2009 8:48:38 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

The history of chemistry is rich and varied.  Visit the Chemical Heritage Foundation website, and go visit the museum for a week!




From: ACTSNYC**At_Symbol_Here**
Date: November 6, 2009 4:32:09 PM EST
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

There are probably a number of good ones, but if you can find one from the 1960s by a man named Aaron J. Ihde, you'll have a good start.  He text was well organized and he was brilliant.  Every lecture was like theater--not from experients, but from the way he introducted each concept.  

Monona Rossol  


From: "Robert Alaimo" <rjalaimo**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 12:55:17 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

I can recommend =93A Chemist in The White House=94 by Glenn T. Seaborg, published by ACS Books.


Bob Alaimo


From: "Yaeger, Mary Ann" <YaegerMa**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 1:34:15 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

Just this morning I was looking at the above link found on the ACS website and found it interesting.


MaryAnn Yaeger
Supervisor of Laboratory Services, CHO
Wesley College
120 N. State Street
Dover, DE 19901
phone (302) 736-2389
Fax (302) 736-2301



Date: November 6, 2009 11:54:35 AM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

Barbara -
The Chemical Heritage Foundation=92s Othmer Library has 100,000 books related to the history of Chemistry!  There is a lot of good information on their website -  The topic is so extensive that you really need to narrow it down to a chemical field, or to specific individuals.  Here is the Foundation=92s online access catalog URL: http://othmerlib.chemheritage. org/.  I hope you have fun with this. 
Russ Phifer


Russ Phifer
WC Environmental, LLC
1085C Andrew Drive
West Chester, PA  19380
610-696-9220x12/ fax 610-344-7519



From: "Dr. Jay A. Young" <chemsafety**At_Symbol_Here**>
Date: November 6, 2009 3:09:56 PM EST
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?



First, the Journal of Chemical Education carries a more or less monthly feature article in which the author answers historical-chemical questions.


second, there are several books, all excellent, all probably out of print but try Amazon and your local librarian--the gal or guy who takes pride in searching the out of print literature for that particular library that still has a copy on its shelves.


The titles, etc.:


Discovery of the Elements by Mary Elvira Weeks, Journal of Chemical Education, 5th edition, 1945


A History of Chemistry by F. J. Moore, Revised by William T. Hall, McGraw-Hill, 2nd edition, 1931


A Short History of Chemistry by J. R. Partington, Macmillan, 3rd edition, 1960


And not least, A History of Chemistry by Ernst von Meyer, translated by George McGowan, Macmillan, 1906.


Happy reading,


Jay Young



Date: November 6, 2009 12:24:45 PM EST
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Any Good Chem History Books?

Hi Barbara,


This will get you started. 


Go to my web site  
On the left side of the screen is a menu.  Click on History of Chemistry 


I have an Illustrated History of Alchemy and Chemistry with a short bibliography.  Books to look at are those by E. J. Holmyard, Aaron Ihde, Henry Leicester, J. R. Partington, and John Read. (Those are the ones that got me started.)  These are all general history of chemistry books.  John Maxon Stillman's The Story of Alchemy and Early Chemistry has an extensive bibliography.  If you can locate a copy of Mary Weeks', Discovery of the Elements, that is a great source of information about the elements.  Ralph Oesper's The Human Side of Scientists (this is out of print) has some great stories about scientists.  Also look for Flash of Genius by Alfred Garrett (this is out of print)  It tells the story of many chemical discoveries.


There is lots more on my web site including some historical information in PowerPoint format ready to use for your classes.


Also check Carmen Giunta's web site at LeMoyne College ~giunta/index.html


If you have particular individuals or discoveries you are looking for, search the Journal of Chemical Education online. If you don't subscribe to the journal, start your subscription ASAP - it gives you free access to the online archives.


Go to the Invention and Technology magazine web site.  Lots of great stuff in their archives, but you do have to browse past issues.  I love this magazine.


Search the Internet - Google works well for this, but check several sources since information occasionally varies. Wikipedia is partially trustworthy, but check references. 


Go to a national ACS meeting.  Visit the Division of History of Chemistry sessions and meet some of us.  We'll all take you under our wings.


This should keep you busy for a while.


Best regards,




_______________________________________________________________ __________


  David A. Katz              
  Chemist, Educator, Expert Demonstrator, Science Communicator, and Consultant   
  Programs and workshops for teachers, schools, museums, and the public
  133 N. Desert Stream Dr. * Tucson, AZ 85745-2277 *  USA
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