UW News

November 9, 2011

Lost and Found Films: Chemical Engineering, 1940

UW News

We visit the world of pre-World War II chemical engingeering in this weeks Lost and Found Film, which is silent but filmed in color — not bad for 1940.

In the three-minute Chemical Engineering, ca. 1940 we see men working machine and turning a faucet-like knob, students in a chemistry classroom mixing solutions in a beaker, then a hand holding a textbook (Quantitiative Chemical Analysis, by George McPhail Smith, if you must know).

We see glass ground on a wheel, wood chips being put into a piece of equipment, water poured as a large piece of equipment rotates, slurry in a trough, professors speaking with students and two professors conferring on a paper.

This is one of hundreds of reels of film that Hannah Palin, film archives specialist with UW Libraries Special Collections, is trying to identify for archiving purposes. She has film clips from the late 1930s through the 1970s — some from research projects, some from campus events and some from commercial films or original productions.

In the case of this footage, Palin would like to know who the professor are? Also, what is the large piece of equipment depicted — is it making a product of some kind or being used in an experiment? Also, why are they grinding what appear to be beakers?

If you can answer these questions or provide any other information about the film, please write your comment below.

Some previous Lost and Found Films:

Nov. 3. Art and Architecture Pavilion.

Oct. 27: Operation Cooperation, 1958.

Oct. 20: Halftime Hijinx

Oct. 13: Lynn Poole speaks at Johns Hopkins (Originally thought to be the UWs Glenn Hughes.)

Oct. 6: Womens Classes, Circa 1965

Sept. 29: Coulee Cleanup, Outtakes

Aug. 18: Kazakh Reel 6

Aug. 4: UW Penthouse Circa 1956

July 27: The University District

July 21: Palo Alto Home

July 14: Aberdeen Gathering

July 6, Research at Sea

June 30: Campus Color, circa 1940-48