A Clarkson Mosaic - page 300

building housing the departments of physics, liberal studies, mathematics, and ROTC opened
for classes on January 4, 1950.
On June 1, 1963, the building was dedicated to Ralph S. Damon, chairman of Clarkson's
Board of Trustees from 1945 to 1955, who had died of pneumonia on January 4, 1956. The
citation for the honorary degree of Doctor of Engineering awarded by the College in 1941 read:
His inspiring leadership and wise counsel were instrumental in guiding the college to a place of eminence
in the crucial period following World War II.
Later, the International League of Aviators awarded him its 1949 trophy "for
outstanding contribution to aviation for over thirty years."
His climb in aviation circles from a millwright to president of TransWorld Airlines was
inspirational. He had learned to fly an airplane before he had learned to drive a car. His career
climaxed by his being elected president of TWA after previously serving as president of
American Airlines, of Republic Aviation Corporation, and of Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor
Company. Born in Franklin, N.H., on July 6, 1897, he attended Harvard College from which he
magna cum laude
in 1918. Following service as an Army Air Corps Cadet during
World War I, he joined Curtiss in 1922, becoming a factory superintendent by the age of 25 and
president in 1935 at age 38.
He had been instrumental in developing such notable aircraft as the Curtiss Robin, and
Thrush; the Curtiss-Wright Junior; and the Condor, the first all-sleeper transport plane. In 1936
he became vice president of operations for American Airlines. Then heeding a government
request in World War II, he took over the presidency of Republic Aviation Corporation,
Farmingdale, N.Y., where he quickly put into mass production the famous P-47 Thunderbolt
fighter. Completing this assignment in 1943, he returned to American Airlines, leaving in 1949
to become president of TWA.
Later in the 1950s when other departments had been moved elsewhere, the entire
building was occupied by the Department of Physics, which subsequently was moved to the
new Science Center in 1971. Civil engineering took over the entire building until 1992 when it
moved its offices and laboratories to the Rowley Laboratory and CAMP buildings on the hill. It
remained vacant until 1993 when the students working on their entry into the Sunrayce solar car
competition began working in portions of it.
In October, Clarkson acquired Weston's Book Store as a gift from Murray Walker,
nephew of J.R. Weston, when he retired. Before World War II, Weston's had been an informal
headquarters for Clarkson students. They would come to the store to hear the latest gossip, and
to jot down in the
Tech Register
any news or gossip or sports predictions they wanted to
circulate. Those
are available in the Clarkson archives. (See p. 25)
New Faculty.
Joining the faculty in the fall were Henry Domingos '56, associate professor of
civil engineering; Leonard Groeneveld, associate professor of business administration and
Director of the Industrial Distribution program; Harry Bingham, Director of Freshmen
Personnel; and Donald T. Mills, financial aid officer, among many others.
Pep Rally.
To kindle school spirit, the Class of '64 organized a giant pep rally on Friday
evening before Parent's Weekend in the fall. Tom Fitzgerald, president of the class, announced
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