Oral history interview with O. Theodor Benfey

  • 1991-May-24 – 1991-Jun-05

O. Theodor Benfey begins the interview with a description of his childhood in Germany during the rise of the Third Reich. He tells of his experiences in England, where he was a student during the war, and then his move to the United States for a postdoctoral fellowship at Columbia University. He describes the development of his interest in physical organic chemistry and structure, and the history of chemistry, and recounts his career as a professor of chemistry and history of science at Haverford, Earlham, and Guilford Colleges. Benfey also tells of his parallel career as a writer, translator and editor and gives details of the various translations he has published, and recalls his term as editor of Chemistry magazine. He concludes with his memories of his studies in Japan and China and his current interests.

Access this interview

Available upon request are 1 PDF transcript and 14 audio recording files.

After submitting a brief form, you will receive immediate access to these files. If you have any questions about transcripts, recordings, or usage permissions, contact the Center for Oral History at oralhistory@sciencehistory.org.

PDF — 856 KB
benfey_ot_0094_SUPPL.pdf