Update: A reader who is both alert and diligent did my checking for me and posted the answer in the comments section. (That isn’t, in fact Weiser in the carving. It’s the registrar, Samuel McCann.) Instead of waiting until morning and going to the library, he did it online, here. I should have thought of that, but I didn’t, so Michael Thannish wins the glory this time. I’m extremely grateful for the help! In a small bit of irony, the drawing of the Chemistry Building carvings that he refers to is already scanned and inside my laptop.
In an earlier post a talked a little bit about Harry Weiser, who was an early Rice chemist and later Dean. He was recruited by President Lovett in 1915 as a brand new Ph.D. from Cornell and would prove to be one of the stalwarts in the building of the Institute. He was a talented chemist and an able administrator who served as head of the Chemistry Department for thirty-five years. He was also a cheerful and popular teacher, who fell naturally into the role of Dean, which he filled from 1933 until his too-early death in 1950. (He was succeeded by another chemist, Holmes Richter, class of 1926.)
Today I accidentally came across a beautiful picture of him in his office in a scrapbook that belonged to his daughter, Dorothy, when she attended Rice in the mid-1930s. I think this is lovely.
Something about it compelled me to go over to the Chemistry Building and see if I could figure out where it was taken. The building has been remodeled and there’s been some renumbering of the rooms, but this is roughly the same place. It’s Kathy Matthews’ office now. (While I was there, I subtly conned her into taking me for a tour of the new physics building, Brockman Hall. It is absolutely gorgeous–I’ll post some pictures later.)
While I was on my way over there, I remembered this. I’m pretty sure that’s Weiser on the left, although I’m at home and can’t check. Tell you what–I’ll check tomorrow and report back later. Don’t even think about asking me who’s on the right. I have no idea.
Bonus picture: Replacing the floor at Autry Court.