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Oral history interview with Kenneth E. Manchester

  • 2004-Oct-13

Oral history interview with Kenneth E. Manchester

  • 2004-Oct-13

Kenneth E. Manchester was drafted after high school to serve in World War II and later attended San Jose State University. Manchester then completed a Ph.D. in chemistry at Stanford University under the supervision of George S. Parks and worked as a postdoctoral fellow under Eric Hutchinson for three years. Manchester joined the surface chemistry group at Shell Development Company in 1955 and moved to Sprague Electric Company in 1962. At Sprague, he directed a research group that pioneered in the development of ion implantation, a key process in the manufacture of integrated circuits. Manchester later headed semiconductor research at Sprague before serving as director of quality assurance and reliability. He concludes the interview with thoughts on the need for chemists in semiconductor development.

Property Value
Place of interview
  • 50 pages
Rights Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License
Rights holder
  • Science History Institute
Credit line
  • Courtesy of Science History Institute

About the Interviewer

Christophe Lécuyer is a graduate of the École Normale Supérieure in Paris, and he received a PhD in history from Stanford University. He was a fellow of the Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology and has taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, and the University of Virginia. Before becoming a senior research fellow at CHF, Lécuyer was the program manager of the electronic materials department. He has published widely on the history of electronics, engineering education, and medical and scientific instruments, and is the author of Making Silicon Valley: Innovation and the Growth of High Tech, 1930–1970 (2005).

Institutional location

Oral history number 0296

Related Items

Interviewee biographical information

  • March 22, 1925
  • Winona, Minnesota, United States
  • November 10, 2014
  • Metro Manila, Philippines


Year Institution Degree Discipline
1949 San José State University AB Chemistry
1950 Stanford University MS Chemistry
1955 Stanford University PhD Thermochemistry

Professional Experience

Stanford University

  • 1952 to 1955 Fellow in Chemistry

Shell Development Company

  • 1955 to 1962 Surface Chemist

Sprague Electric Company

  • 1962 to 1963 Section Head of Semiconductor Chemistry
  • 1963 to 1969 Department Head of Semiconductor Chemistry
  • 1969 to 1976 Director of Semiconductor Research and Development
  • 1976 to 1979 Chief Scientist
  • 1979 to 1985 Director of Semiconductor Quality Assurance and Reliability
  • 1985 to 1989 Corporate Vice President, Research Development and Engineering

Allegro Microsystems, Inc.

  • 1989 to 1996 Consultant


Year(s) Award
1948 Scholarship award, top ten highest grade point averages at San Jose State College
1949 Member, Key Club of Phi Beta Kappa Faculty Club, San Jose State College
1961 Member, Optimist Club of Concord, California
1984 Sprague-Worcester Major Achievement Award, Sprague Electric Company
1984 Employee of the Year, Sprague Electric Company
1985 Commendation from Vice President of Integrated Circuits Operation, Sprague Electric Company
1985 Sprague Fellow, Sprague Electric Company
1988 Biographical record, Electronics Buyers News, September edition
1993 Biographical record, Who's Who in the World

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PDF — 265 KB

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

9 Separate Interview Segments Archival-quality downloads