Oral history interview with Elizabeth Dyer

Oral history interview with Elizabeth Dyer

  • 1986-Oct-13

Elizabeth Dyer recounts her childhood in Haverill, Massachusetts and entering Mount Holyoke College at the age of seventeen. There she was influenced by two outstanding teachers, Louisa Stevenson and Dorothy Hahn, which led first to a major in chemistry, and then to the M. A. degree. It was at Mount Holyoke that Dyer had her first experience of teaching chemistry before she moved to Yale for Ph.D. studies and later post-doctoral work, researching heterocyclic chemistry under the guidance of Treat B. Johnson. In 1933 Elizabeth Dyer accepted an instructorship at the Women's College, University of Delaware, where she was to remain for the rest of her career. She discusses her early years there before the merger of the Women's and Men's Colleges and recounts her sabbatical year working with George Barger at the University of Edinburgh. In 1943 she commenced her research studies in polymer chemistry, largely at the suggestion of the Armstrong Cork Company. She describes her linoleate copolymerization work and her later polyurethane studies. As a consequence of the new research initiative, Dyer set up courses in polymer chemistry, some of the earliest after the polymer program at Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute. In the final section of the interview Elizabeth Dyer reflects on her priorities as an academic and briefly discusses her retirement hobbies.

Place of interview
Original file type MP3, PDF
  • 36 pages
Rights In Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Permitted
Rights holder
  • Science History Institute
Related URL
Credit line
  • Courtesy of Science History Institute

Physical location


Cite as

Elizabeth Dyer, interviewed by Herman Skolnik in Hockessin, Delaware on October 13, 1986. Philadelphia: Science History Institute, n.d. Oral History Transcript 0060. https://digital.sciencehistory.org/works/70795853r.

  Export citation (RIS) ?

This citation is automatically generated and may contain errors.

Transcript (Published Version)

The published version of the transcript may diverge from the interview audio due to edits to the transcript made by staff of the Center for Oral History, often at the request of the interviewee, during the transcript review process.

Complete Interview Audio File Web-quality download

2 Separate Interview Segments Archival-quality downloads