Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History

Sauer, Anne

Branco, Jessica

Bennett, John

Crowley, Zachary


Lamb, Arthur Becket, 1880-1952


Arthur Becket Lamb (1880-1952), A1900, G1904, H1920, one of America's great chemists, was recipient of the Ballou Medal for Distinguished Service in 1944.

Lamb was born in Attleboro, Massachusetts, on February 25, 1880.He received both a bachelor and a master of arts degree from Tufts in 1900, focusing his studies on chemistry. He then received another master of arts degree from Harvard in 1903 and his Ph. D. from Harvard and Tufts in 1904. Lamb then studied abroad at the Universities of Heidelberg and Leipzig for one and a half years, returning to Harvard in 1905 as an instructor in Electro-chemistry.

In 1906, Lamb joined the faculty of New York University, becoming associate professor of Chemistry and department head and director of the Havemeyer Laboratory of Chemistry. Lamb also served as the secretary of the Bronx Society of Arts and Sciences and chaired NYU's Faculty Committee on Undergraduate Organizations. He again returned to Harvard in 1912, serving as director of its Chemistry Laboratory and, from 1920 as a full professor of chemistry. During World War I, Lamb was lieutenant colonel in the Research Division of the Chemical Warfare Service of the United States Army, in charge of defense research in chemistry. He was elected president of the American Chemical Society in 1933.In 1940, he was appointed to the deanship of the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, holding the position for three years.

In 1920, Tufts conferred and honorary doctor of science degree on Lamb, making him the first four-time recipient of a Tufts degree. Lamb also received the Hosea Ballou Medal of Distinguished Service, awarded to him by the Board of Trustees in 1944.

Lamb died in 1952.

Source: VF; Elliot, Clark A. and Margaret W. Rossiter. Science at Harvard University. Bethlehem: Lehigh University Press, 1992. 318

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  • The encyclopedia seeks to capture more than 150 years of Tufts' achievements, societal contributions and outstanding alumni and faculty in concise entries. As a source of accurate factual information, the Encyclopedia can be used by anyone interested in the history of Tufts and of the people who have made it the unique institution it is.
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Donald A. Cowdery Memorial Scholarship, 1946
Dr. Benjamin Andrews Professorship of Surgery, 1987
Dr. Philip E. A. Sheridan Prize, 1977
The Drug Bust, 1970
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Dugger, Edward Jr., 1919-75
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Durkee, Henrietta Noble Brown, 1871-1946
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