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Biographical entry Chapman, Robert William (1866 - 1942)

Born
27 December 1866
Stony Stratford, Buckinghamshire, England
Died
27 February 1942
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Occupation
Engineer and Mathematician

Summary

Robert William Chapman became the first Professor of Engineering at the University of Adelaide (1907). He was Professor of Mathematics at Adelaide 1910-19 and in 1920 returned to the chair of engineering, a position he held until his retirement in 1937.

Details

Born Stony Stratford, Buckinghamshire, England, 27 December 1866. Died Adelaide, 27 February 1942. CMG 1927, Kt 1937. Educated University of Melbourne (BA 1886, MA, BE 1888). Contractor on railway construction work 1888; assistant lecturer in mathematics and physics, University of Adelaide 1889-1900, and also taught mathematics at the South Australian School of Mines and Industries from 1900; lecturer in engineering, University of Adelaide 1901-07, professor of engineering 1907-10, professor of mathematics and mechanics 1910-19, professor of engineering 1920-37, emeritus professor from 1937. Peter Nicol Russell medal, Institution of Engineers 1928; W.C. Kernot memorial medal, University of Melbourne 1931. Foundation member and president, South Australian Institute of Engineers 1913; president, South Australian Institute of Surveyors 1917-29; foundation councillor and later president, Institution of Engineers, Australia; president, School of Mines and Industries council 1939-42. Published "The Elements of Astronomy for Surveyors" (London, 1919) and "Reinforced Concrete" (Adelaide). Commemorated by the Institution of Engineers' R.W. Chapman medal and by a prize at the University of Adelaide.

Archival resources

Astronomical Society of South Australia

  • Robert William Chapman - Records, 1907 - 1940; Astronomical Society of South Australia. Details

Barr Smith Library, Special Collections, The University of Adelaide

  • Robert William Chapman - Records, 1907 - 1942; Barr Smith Library, Special Collections, The University of Adelaide. Details

Institute of Surveyors, Australia - South Australian Division

  • Robert William Chapman - Records, 1907 - 1940; Institute of Surveyors, Australia - South Australian Division. Details

Published resources

Book Sections

  • Bridgland, R. J., 'Chapman, Sir Robert William (1866-1942), engineer', in Bede Nairn and Geoffrey Serle (eds), Australian Dictionary of Biography, vol. 7, Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, 1979, pp. 613-615. Also available at http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A070623b.htm. Details

Journal Articles

  • Chapman, R.W., 'The Past Work of the Royal Society Outside the Domain of Natural Science.', Proceedings of the Royal Society of South Australia, vol. lx, 1936, pp. xxv-xxx. Details
  • Grant, Kerr and Gartrell, H. W., 'Obituary: Robert William Chapman, 1866-1942', Australian Journal of Science, vol. 5, no. 1, 1942, pp. 35-36. Details

Online Resources

McCarthy, G.J.