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Carl Wischmeyer Personal Papers

Identifier: MS 0639
Finding aid note: Stored off-site at the Library Service Center. Please request this material via or call 713-348-2586.

Scope and Contents

The collection consists primarily of correspondence belonging to Carl Wischmeyer and information about his career as a professor at Rice University. The earliest letters were written by his mother to his father shrotly before their marriage in 1912. Another group is made up of letters from Carl to his finacee and then wife between 1942 and 1945. A third group is letters written by WIschmeyer's wife to him while he was in New York in July and August of 1945. A fourth group consists of letters from Mrs. Wischmeyer to Carl, four from 1948, one from 1969, and one not dated. The fifth group is letters to Mrs. Wischmeyer from 1943, 1944, 1945, and 1949. Three letters to Mr. and Mrs. Wischmeyer together from 1945 and 1950 make up a sixth group. Correspondence to Carl from people other than his wife when he was in New York in July and August 1945 makes up a seventh group. Messages from Robert Caldwell and his wife Edith at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Dec. 1942 are an eighth group. The ninth group is two letters from Carl's mother to his wife's mothers in 1943.

The information about Carl Wischmeyer's career includes his curriculum vitae, an article he wrote for the Texas Engineer, records of payments received from Humble Oil Company related to patents, articles from the Rice Thresher and the Sallyport, and photographs. Finally, there is biographical information about Wischmeyer's father, Carl Sr., also an enginner with a distinguished academic career.


  • Creation: 1912 - 1945


Conditions Governing Access

This material is open for research.

Stored offsite at the Library Service Center and require 24-hour notice for retrieval. Please contact the Woodson Research Center at 713-348-2586 or for more information.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from the Carl R. Wischmeyer Personal Papers must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University.

Biographical / Historical

Born Oct. 2, 1916, in Terre Haute, Indiana, educated there at Rose Polytechnic Institute and at Yale University, Carl Wischmeyer joined the faculty of Rice Insititute in 1939 as an instructor of electrical engineering. He advanced to assistant professor in 1946, to associate professor in 1950, and to full professor in 1959. In 1956 when the first of Rice's residential colleges, Baker College, was founded, Professor Wischmeyer was appointed its master, a position he held until 1968.

Wischmeyer's mastership came to an end to enable him to devote time to new duties as Director of Continuing Studies, which was established by Rice President Kenneth Pitzer to provide a way for people especially in industry to learn about technical developments having occurred since their formal schooling. A likely reason for Wischmeyer's appointment to this position is that he had served as a consultant for various firms, including Humble Oil and Refining Company, TGR Research Company, and teh Esso Production Research Company. In the course of his consulting work, he acquired eight patents. His published research is in electronic instrumentation and superconductivity.

Wischmeyer was profesionally active also off campus. In 1969 he was named director of Region 5 of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and a member of the international board of directors of IEEE.

He received an honorary doctorate from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. On Oct. 7, 2009 he died in Houston at the age of 93.


3 Linear Feet (3 boxes)

Language of Materials



The collection consists primarily of personal letters belonging to Carl R. Wischmeyer, amny of them exchanged between Wischmeyer and his wife Mary. There is also information about his career as a professor of electrical engineering at Rice University. This includes documents relating to patents acquired as well as an article written for the Texas Engineer.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Mary Grace Hamill in March 2015.

Guide to the Carl R. Wischmeyer Personal Papers
Mary Tobin
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Woodson Research Center, Rice University, Houston, Texas Repository

Fondren Library MS-44, Rice University
6100 Main St.
Houston Texas 77005 USA