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Marcus McCraven

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Information about Marcus McCraven

Profile image of Marcus McCraven

Profession

Category:
ScienceMakers
Occupation(s):
Electrical Engineer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue, Gray
Favorite Food:
Southern Food
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
12/27/1923
Birth Location:
Des Moines, Iowa

Profession

Category:
ScienceMakers
Occupation(s):
Electrical Engineer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue, Gray
Favorite Food:
Southern Food
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
12/27/1923
Birth Location:
Des Moines
See how Marcus McCraven is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Electrical engineer Marcus R. McCraven was born on December 27, 1923 in Des Moines, Iowa to parents Marcus and Buena McCraven. After graduating from high school, McCraven enrolled at Howard University but was drafted into the U.S. Army during his first year of college. He was listed as an expert rifleman but went on to serve as a supply clerk with an engineering regiment in Papua, New Guinea and in the Philippines. Returning to the United States, McCraven continued his studies at Howard University and graduated with his B.S. degree in electrical engineering.

Upon graduation, McCraven was hired at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C. After six months, he was promoted to electrical engineer and became the project leader of the Nuclear Systems Branch. McCraven soon moved to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California where he worked on the hydrogen bomb. His area of expertise on the project was diagnostics and he was instrumental the early development of nuclear weapons, including nuclear tests on Bikini Island and in Nevada. McCraven then joined the research staff at the California Lawrence Radiation Laboratory; and, in the 1960s, he left California and moved to Connecticut where he began to work for Phelps Dodge. In 1970, he joined United Illuminating Co. as the director of environmental engineering and was later promoted to vice president.
McCraven has also served as trustee at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut. In 2011, McCraven received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters degree from Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, Connecticut.

McCraven lives in Hamden, Connecticut with his wife, Marguerite McCraven, a former social worker in the Hamden Public Schools. They have three children: Paul McCraven, the vice president of community development at New Alliance Bank; Stephen McCraven, a musician living in Paris, Carol McCraven.

Marcus McCraven was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 8, 2013.

See how Marcus McCraven is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Marcus McCraven's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven talks about his mother's family
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven talks Port Gibson, Mississippi
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven talks about his parents' occupations
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Marcus McCraven talks about his family during the Great Depression
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Marcus McCraven describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Marcus McCraven talks about his father
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven describes how his parent's met
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven describes his parents' personalities and who he takes after
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven describes the beginning of his interest in engineering
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Marcus McCraven talks about his activities as a child
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Marcus McCraven talks about his junior high and high schools
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Marcus McCraven talks about living with his aunt while in high school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven talks about his interests in high school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven talks about his time at Howard University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven describes his time in the Army during World War II pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven describes his time in the Army during World War II pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven describes the racial prejudice he faced in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Marcus McCraven describes his time at Howard University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Marcus McCraven describes meeting his wife Marguerite
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven describes his patent on a high current photodiode pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven describes his patent on a high current photodiode pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven describes his work at the University of California at Berkeley Lawrence Radiation Laboratory pt.1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven describes his work at the University of California at Berkeley Lawrence Radiation Laboratory pt.2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven talks about the hydrogen bomb test on Bikini Atoll pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Marcus McCraven talks about the hydrogen bomb test on Bikini Atoll pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Marcus McCraven describes nuclear testing pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven describes nuclear testing pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven describes Operation Plowshare
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven talks about the Phelps Dodge Corporation
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven describes being hired by the Phelps Dodge Corporation
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven talks about the politics of nuclear weapons
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Marcus McCraven talks about being a charter member of the advisory committee for establishing the Environmental Protection Agency
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven describes the licensing of a low-sulfur coal burning plant for United Illuminating Company
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven talks about his involvement in several organizations
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven talks about the work of painter Rudolph Zallinger
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven talks about William Strickland and Carlton Highsmith
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven talks about his family
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Marcus McCraven describes his travels pt. 1
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Marcus McCraven describes his travels pt. 2
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Marcus McCraven reflects on his legacy
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Marcus McCraven describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Marcus McCraven talks about how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Marcus McCraven describes his photographs