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Samuel Massie

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Information about Samuel Massie

Profile image of Samuel Massie

Profession

Category:
EducationMakers
ScienceMakers
Occupation(s):
Chemistry Professor
Organic Chemist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Navy Blue
Favorite Food:
Watermelon, Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
None
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
Do the best you can with what you have.

Birthplace

Born:
7/3/1919
Birth Location:
Little Rock, Arkansas

Profession

Category:
EducationMakers
ScienceMakers
Occupation(s):
Chemistry Professor
Organic Chemist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Navy Blue
Favorite Food:
Watermelon, Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
None
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
Do the best you can with what you have.

Birthplace

Born:
7/3/1919
Birth Location:
Little Rock
See how Samuel Massie is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Organic Chemist Samuel Massie was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, on July 3, 1919; his mother, a teacher, and his father, a minister, instilled in him a love of education. By the age of thirteen, Massie had graduated from high school. Because he was denied admittance to the University of Arkansas because of his race, Massie went on to attend Agricultural Mechanical Normal College of Arkansas. He then attended Fisk University before being accepted to Iowa State University, where he received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry.

Massie attended Iowa State University at the height of World War II; during this time, he was summoned before the draft board. Massie was allowed to return to school, but he was assigned to the Manhattan Project, the program that created the first atomic bomb. After completing his Ph.D., Massie returned to Fisk University to teach; it was here that he met his future wife, Gloria. Over the years, Massie held positions at Langston University, Howard University, and the National Science Foundation. In 1963, Massie was named president of the University of North Carolina Central.

In 1966, Massie became the first African American professor at the U.S. Naval Academy; he then served as chair of the chemistry department from 1977 to 1981. In 1994, Massie retired from the Naval Academy, though he retained the title professor emeritus.

Massie was awarded with an NAACP Freedom Fund Award; a White House Initiative Lifetime Achievement Award; and was named one of the seventy-five outstanding scientists in the country by Chemical and Engineering News Magazine. Massie was also involved with the Smithsonian Institute, and spent more than two decades on the Maryland State Board for Community Colleges.

Samuel Massie passed away on April 10, 2005, three months after the passing of his wife, Gloria.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Samuel Massie
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Samuel Massie's favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Samuel Massie recalls his grandparents
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Samuel Massie relates the importance of education in his mother's family
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Samuel Massie describes his father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Samuel Massie shares childhood memories
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Samuel Massie recalls his school days in Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Samuel Massie discusses his options after graduating from high school at thirteen
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Samuel Massie recalls his time at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Samuel Massie describes his experiences at Fisk University
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Samuel Massie describes his experiences at Iowa State University
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Samuel Massie discusses his work with the Manhattan Project
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Samuel Massie recounts being the first black to work for Eastman Kodak Company
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Samuel Massie remembers the Manhattan Project
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Samuel Massie discusses his post-graduate career
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Samuel Massie recalls meeting Martin Luther King
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Samuel Massie discusses a potential biography
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Samuel Massie becomes the first black professor at the U.S. Naval Academy
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Samuel Massie discusses his accomplishments at the U.S. Naval Academy
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Samuel Massie discusses an elementary school being named in his honor
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Samuel Massie lists his honors
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Samuel Massie considers how he'd like to be remembered
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Samuel Massie discusses his honors in the field of chemistry
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Samuel Massie discusses the importance of black colleges
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Samuel Massie discusses his tenure as the Chairman for the Maryland State Board of Community Colleges
  • Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Samuel Massie remembers his work at Eastman Kodak Company
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Photo - Samuel Massie as a child with his father, Samuel P. Massie, Sr., and mother, Earlee Taylor Massie, ca. 1921
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Photo - Samuel Massie with his wife, Gloria Massie, ca. 1998
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Photo - Samuel Massie with his wife, Gloria Massie, at a formal event, ca. 1998
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Photo - Samuel Massie with his mother, Earlee Taylor Massie, and his brother, Jack Massie, not dated
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Photo - Samuel Massie in his chemistry lab at the U.S. Naval Academy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Photo - Samuel Massie with his wife, Gloria Massie, at the U.S. Naval Academy, ca. 1990s
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Photo - Samuel Massie's three sons, James Massie, Herbert Massie, and Trei Massie, ca. 1963
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Photo - Samuel Massie in a portrait, ca. 1993