Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIII, No. 5
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
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Walter J. Kauzmann

William L. (Bill) Wilson Jr.

Floyd T. Hand Jr.

Gloria Alexander

Barbara Schwarzschild

Max Rock

Miriam Klothen

Memorial Service for Laura McClure

Walter J. Kauzmann

Walter J. Kauzmann

Walter J. Kauzmann, 92, of Montgomery, died January 27 at Stonebridge in Montgomery. The cause was pneumonia, but his health had been declining since breaking his hip in December 2007. He had lived in Princeton for almost 60 years before moving to Montgomery.

Born in Mount Vernon, New York, Mr. Kauzmann grew up in New Rochelle. He was the son of Albert F. Kauzmann, who came to the United States from Germany in 1895, and Julia (Kahle) Kauzmann.

He graduated from Cornell University in 1937 with a Bachelor of Arts and went to Princeton University to pursue a Ph.D. in organic chemistry. He received his Ph.D. in physical chemistry instead, in 1940, and went to East Pittsburgh as a Westinghouse Research Fellow, a two-year postdoctoral appointment. While there he published a paper in Chemical Review in 1948, “The nature of the glassy state and the behavior of liquids at low temperatures,” in which he described puzzling behaviors in some types of liquids as they changed between liquid and solid states. These phenomena are commonly referred to as the “Kauzmann Paradox.”

In 1942 he joined the U.S. government’s National Defense Research Council laboratory in Bruceton, Pa., where he worked on explosives. During his Pittsburgh years he bought a flute and began lessons. In 1944, eager to leave the Pittsburgh area, he was able to find a position on the Manhattan Project. Its location in New Mexico allowed him to indulge his passion for the outdoors, making regular trips to hike, backpack, and cross-country ski, and to explore the pueblos of the area.

Eventually he was put in charge of producing the detonator for the Trinity test bomb and the plutonium (“Fat Man”) bomb, and he witnessed the Trinity test on July 16, 1945.

In 1946 he joined the Chemistry Department at Princeton as an assistant professor. He married Elizabeth Flagler, then a research assistant in the laboratory of Frank Johnson in the Biology Department, in April, 1951.

As a Guggenheim Fellow in 1957 he took a second sabbatical at the Carlsberg Laboratory, this time with his wife and their two young sons. Their daughter was born during this time in Denmark.

His first book, Quantum Chemistry, was published in 1957, followed by The Kinetic Theory of Gases (1966) and Thermodynamics and Statistics (1967). With David Eisenberg, he wrote The Structure and Properties of Water in 1969, a book reissued in 2005 by Oxford University Press as part of its Classic Texts in the Physical Sciences series.

He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Science in 1963, and to the National Academy of Science in 1964. From 1963 to 1982 he was the David B. Jones Professor of Chemistry, and he served as the department chairman from 1964 to 1968. In 1966 he received the first Linderstrøm-Lang Prize, awarded for outstanding contributions in the areas of biochemistry or physiology. His received two Guggenheim Fellowships, in 1957 and 1974. He was chairman of the Biochemical Sciences Department in 1980-81 and retired in 1982.

The University of Stockholm awarded him an honorary Ph.D. in 1992, and he received the Stein and Moore Award of the Protein Society in 1993 “for his seminal work on the physical chemistry of proteins.” In 1993 he worked for a year at the National Resource Council of Canada in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

He enjoyed playing flute and piano duets with his wife, gardening, travel, and experimenting with cooking. He was generous with his time and advice, supporting many causes, especially the preservation of open space, hiking organizations, and cultural institutions.

He was predeceased by his wife of 50 years, Elizabeth, in 2004. His survivors include two sons, C. Peter Kauzmann of Skillman and Eric Kauzmann of Fort Collins, Colo.; a daughter, Lise Pacala of Princeton; and eight grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of the donor’s choice.

William L. (Bill)
Wilson Jr.

William L. (Bill) Wilson Jr.

William L. (Bill) Wilson Jr., 65, a former Princeton resident, died January 20 peacefully in central Vermont three weeks after a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer.

He was the son of former Township mayor and School Board chair William Wilson Sr. and Edna Wilson, who is remembered for her many years of service to the Princeton Medical Center.

Born in Bayshore, Long Island, Bill attended the Valley Road grade school and Princeton High School.

Inspired by his scoutmaster and RCA researcher Harvey Hook, he devoted his life to electrical engineering research and education, outdoor activities, the environment, and nurturing and mentoring young people.

He did both his undergraduate and graduate work at Cornell University, where he received a Ph.D. in electrical engineering.

Prof. Wilson served on the faculty of Rice University in Houston, Texas for 34 years, where he was widely recognized for inspired teaching and supporting a wide range of student initiatives. Known to students as “Dr. Bill,” he served 28 years as a resident associate of Wiess College on the Rice campus and received numerous teaching awards.

Throughout his career, he continued his research in semiconductors, electro-optic devices, and lasers, publishing many technical papers and texts. Among his proudest achievements was participation in the development of Connexions, a groundbreaking on-line environment for freely sharing and publishing scholarly content on the web.

He had strong commitments to Camp Keewaydin, a boys’ summer camp in Vermont with Princeton ties. Beginning as a camper at age 13, he continued for many years as a staff member in the camp’s youth and adult programs.

In 2006 he retired to Warren, Vermont, where he brought his talents and energies to pursuits that included work with local schools and the Loon Recovery Project on East Long Pond in Woodbury, where he owned a small cabin. He also consulted part time for Solar Works Inc. in Montpelier designing renewable energy installations.

His life was enriched by his love of learning, research, music, theater, photography, recording, woodworking, outdoor activities, and teaching and inspiring youth to maximize their potentials.

He is survived by his brother, Tom Wilson of Viroqua, Wisconsin; Jesse Hale Wood of Chicago; Lil, Jamie, Emily, Heather, Hazel, and Grayson Brewster of Warren, Vt.; and Betty Whelan Donovan of Princeton.

A memorial service was held January 31 in the Wiess College Commons at Rice University.

Memorial gifts may be directed to the Dr. Bill Wilson Student Initiative Grant fund through the Development Office at Rice, to Rice University, P.O. Box 1982, MS-81, Houston, Texas 77251. Contributions may also be made online at

Floyd T. Hand Jr.

Floyd T. Hand Jr., 77, of Princeton, died January 29 in the University Medical Center at Princeton.

Born in Glen Ridge, N.J., he was a longtime Princeton resident.

He was last employed as a painter with Julius Gross Painters, Princeton.

Son of the late Floyd T. and Mary (Daum) Hand Sr., he is survived by his wife of 55 years, Eileen P. (Cunningham ) Hand; a son, Russell “Rusty” Hand; a daughter, Nancy Harris; and two sisters, Carol Barrett and Shirley Smith.

A memorial service was held yesterday, February 3 at Nassau Christian Center, 26 Nassau Street.

Arrangements were by the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home.

Gloria Alexander

Gloria Louise Alexander of Princeton died January 27 in the Merwick Rehab Hospital and Nursing Care.

Born in Buffalo, N.Y., she was a lifelong Princeton resident.

Daughter of the late Leslie H. and Edith Davis Richardson, and wife of the late William Alexander, she is survived by a son, Tony J. Alexander, and a daughter, Tonya J. Alexander.

Burial will be private and at the convenience of the family.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home.

Barbara Schwarzschild

Barbara Cherry Schwarzschild, 94, of Pennswood Village, Newtown, Pa., formerly of Princeton, died December 22 at home. She was the widow of Martin Schwarzschild, professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Princeton University.

Born in Boston, the daughter of Martin and Evelyn Cherry, she graduated from Radcliffe College where she majored in astronomy. She was employed for brief periods at the Hayden Planetarium and Harvard College Observatory, where she met her future husband.

She was a member of the Radiation Laboratory at M.I.T. from 1942 to 1945 before marrying Mr. Schwarzschild in 1945 after his return from World War II. The couple lived in New York City for two years while Mr. Schwarzschild was at Columbia University, then moved to Princeton in 1947 when he was appointed Professor of Astronomy at Princeton University. Mrs. Schwarzschild worked with him on several astronomy research papers.

She took an active part in the Princeton League of Women Voters, serving as its president.

The Schwarzschilds made numerous car trips to the west coast as a result of Prof. Schwarzschild’s appointments observing at Mt. Wilson Observatory in Pasadena, Calif. They enjoyed travel, the desert, and nature, and developed a strong interest in birds, taking photographs of them in many parts of the world. Mrs. Schwarzschild lectured on birds to school children, and wrote and published a bird book, Guppy Grebe.

She is survived by the children of her husband’s sister, Alison and Bernard Thornton, and many friends.

Max Rock

Max Rock, 61, of East Windsor, died January 30 in the University Medical Center at Princeton.

Born in Port Of Spain, Trinidad, he immigrated to the United States in 1965, residing in Brooklyn before moving to East Windsor in 2000.

Mr. Rock retired in 2004 with over 32 years of service as an insurance underwriter for New York State Fund, New York City.

He was an avid golfer and tennis player who loved the outdoors.

He is survived by his wife of 18 years, Mary R. (Blackburn) Rock; and four brothers, Michael, Curtis, Jeffrey, and Milton Rock.

The funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. today, Wednesday, February 4 at the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Avenue, Princeton. Burial will follow in Princeton Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, Tenn. 38105.

Miriam Klothen

Miriam U. Klothen (née Frank), who founded the Cherry Hill Nursery School and directed it for 21 years, died February 2. Predeceased last year by her husband Kenneth, she is survived by her son Kenneth, his wife Eve, and grandchildren Rebecca and Erich. Relatives and friends are invited to attend graveside services at 11 a.m. on Friday at Haym Salomon Memorial Park in Frazer, Pa. Shiva will be observed at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Klothen. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Marlboro Music Festival, 1616 Walnut Street, Suite 1600, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103. Arrangements are by Levine & Sons (www.levine

Memorial Service for Laura McClure

A memorial service in celebration of the life of Laura Lee Thompson McClure will be held on Saturday, February 14 at 2 p.m. at the Nassau Presbyterian Church, 61 Nassau Street. A reception will follow.

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