Posts tagged: Leslie Silverman

Leslie Silverman Papers Open to Research

By , December 8, 2017
Leslie Silverman

Leslie Silverman

The Center for the History of Medicine is pleased to announce the opening of the Leslie Silverman papers, 1920-1967 (inclusive). Leslie Silverman (1914-1966), was an engineer specializing in air pollution and industrial hygiene. At Harvard School of Public Health he was Professor of Engineering in Environmental Hygiene, and Head of the Department of Industrial Hygiene (1961-1966). While a student at Harvard in the Graduate School of Engineering, Silverman was a Gordon McKay Scholar and Research Fellow. At the Harvard School of Public Health, he was appointed Assistant Professor (1945), Associate Professor (1948), and Professor (1958), and succeeded Philip Drinker as Head of the Department of Industrial Hygiene (1961). He was the Director of the Radiological Hygiene program and the Harvard Air Cleaning Laboratory at Harvard School of Public Health. During World War II, Silverman worked with Drinker and his brother Cecil Drinker on the development of the L-12 aviation oxygen supply mask, as well as on chemical warfare masks. After the end of World War II, he worked on research related to atomic power and served on the Statutory Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards, the principle safety advisor to the Atomic Energy Commission. Silverman also worked as a consulting engineer, on issues regarding air pollution control, industrial hygiene, and industrial ventilation.

Leslie Silverman and Philip Drinker

Leslie Silverman and Philip Drinker

The Leslie Silverman papers, 1920-1967, are the product of his activities as a consultant, researcher, and Harvard School of Public Health faculty member. The papers include records from Silverman’s work as a consultant, records related to his patent applications, and his professional writings on topics in air pollution and industrial hygiene. The collection also contains records related his involvement with national committees and his attendance at professional conferences, subject files and publications related to his research interests, as well as personal correspondence and biographical records.

The finding aid for the Silverman papers can be found here.

For information regarding access to this collection, please contact the Public Services staff.

Staff Finds: Fish Odor Control in Gloucester

By , October 3, 2017
Leslie Silverman

Leslie Silverman

While processing the Leslie Silverman papers, Center staff came across records related to an effort to control fish odor in processing plants in Gloucester, MA. Silverman was retained as a consultant by the Gloucester Community Pier Association to inspect fish processing facilities and provide recommendations for odor abatement. The issue arose initially by way of complaints from local residents and grew to encompass health concerns regarding effluent. While using chemical analysis to determine the contaminants being released by the processing, Silverman also attempted to correlate the time and location of complaints with the wind direction and the operating times of the processing plants. Initial recommendations were made in 1952, but non-compliance issues necessitated Silverman’s involvement over the next several years. The records contain Silverman’s notes and reports on his analysis, correspondence with government, plant managers, and private citizens, and lists of complaints received by local authorities. Also included is his research on similar problems in other locations. Selected records from Silverman’s work in Gloucester can be seen below.

Leslie Silverman (1914-1966) was Professor of Engineering in Environmental Hygiene and Head of the Department of Industrial Hygiene at Harvard School of Public Health. He also worked as a consulting engineer on issues regarding air pollution control, industrial hygiene, and industrial ventilation. The Center holds the Leslie Silverman papers, 1920-1967, which are the product of his activities as a consultant, researcher, and Harvard School of Public Health faculty member.

For information regarding access to this collection, please contact the Public Services staff.

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