Alumni Updates

Alumni Updates

1930s

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Griffin, William Posted: 7/6/2011 9:50:06 AM
Class of 1936

PI KAPP

Is it true that as your friends disappear some of your memories do the same? It does seem so since there are very, very few of my class, Chem. Eng, '36, that are around and that includes my brother/friends at Alpha Mu. But there are still lots of fun memories of the Pi Kapp years. One truly unusual one was the night the College had a concert pianist perform and some of the brothers attended the concert at the college. Somehow they persuaded the artist to come back to Alpha Mu after the concert. We had been given a grand piano a year or so before. It was not in good condition, but the pianist played a couple of selections and did a great job and he did it to a packed room because the word spread rapidly and everyone came downstairs.

And brothers are helpful. In '36 jobs were not easy to find, something called the Depression. Finally one appeared and my work was to be just outside a town called Tamaqua, PA. Never been there so where might lodging/boarding be found? Brother Eldridge Camp was from there and his folks agreed to put me up and I was part of the family for over a year. His father was the Reading Railroad watch inspector and during that year he essentially apprenticed me in clock repair. More later on this.

My job was with Atlas Powder Company and had to do with developing chemicals for industry rather than explosives studies. In the next dozen or so years it was my good fortune to uncover and publish a couple of ideas that are still in active use. The first was an electronic detection of a titration endpoint for determining water content. The second was a method of choosing the best emulsifier system for a given application. In fact, over the years the latter has been recognized with a couple of awards and more recently the dedication of a new innovation laboratory in my name.

Of course, long retired from this sort of thing and can you imagine my retirement "job"? It was only too natural to set up a shop for repairing antique clocks and it has been so interesting, both challenging and fun. And that goes back to Brother Eldridge Camp! And yes, still doing it, though not as fast as before.

Keep up the camaraderie.

Bill Griffin '36
07/05/11

 

Griffin, William Posted: 6/4/2010 11:16:08 AM
Class of 1936 

Of course, this is only one of my memories, but it is a most unusual one. One evening in the early 30s the College hosted a notable pianist who gave a splendid recital and a number of us attended. But imagine our amazement beyond surprise when we got back to the house and he shortly appeared and played a few pieces on our recently acquired grand piano, much to the surprise and delight of a good crowd of us.

How did this happen, of all things? It seemed that one of our brothers knew someone who knew the pianist and he contacted him and extended the invitation. Truly amazing.

Of course, some of us squirmed throughout our special event. The grand piano had been given to us by a brother's family. Unfortunately it was not in tune but even worse it was in disrepair in a number of ways. However, the artist still did a remarkable job despite the challenges.

Of course, the ultimate fate of the piano is unknown to me since my relationship after graduation has been unfortunately essentially nil. Looking back, it is interesting to consider that graduating in the midst of a depression can carry with you for the rest of your life and probably has two monetary effects: first, the chances are that your generally lower earnings will persist even to your pension but second, you truly learned to spend wisely and save as much as possible.

 

Griffin, William Posted: 7/7/2009 7:52:52 PM
Class of 1936

Last year it was my good fortune to have an Applied Research building at the Wilmington, Delaware Croda facility dedicated in my name. This was based on an article written in 1949 on emulsifier selection by HLB that is still being used by them and also throughout the industry. You never know when lightning will strike.

 

Grube, Lewis "Lew" Posted: 11/28/2006 10:12:12 AM
Class of 1938 

My wife and I each year spend 5 months (Nov. 15 to Apr 15) in Marco Island, Fl and the other 7 months in Indiana, PA. We are both doing well and continue to attend all home football games.

 

Colton, Grant Posted: 11/28/2006 10:12:12 AM
Class of 1934 

I was president of Alpha Mu Chapter of Pi Kappa Phi in 1934, a member of Blue Key and Parmi Nu, and would like to hear from or about any living members of Alpha M (class years 1930-1936).

 

Keck, Martin Posted: 11/28/2006 10:12:12 AM
Class of 1930 

Deceased per Patricia Wisneski.

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