Marie Boas Hall

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Marie Boas Hall
Born Marie Boas
(1919-10-18)October 18, 1919
Died February 23, 2009(2009-02-23) (aged 89)
Alma mater Radcliffe College, AB, chemistry, 1940; Cornell University, PhD, 1949
Occupation Historian of science
Employer Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Brandeis University, University of California, Los Angeles, Indiana University, Imperial College London
Spouse(s) Alfred Rupert Hall
Relatives Older brother, mathematician Ralph P. Boas, Jr.
Awards George Sarton Medal, Fellow of the British Academy, American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Marie Boas Hall (October 18, 1919 – February 23, 2009) was a historian of science, known for her teaching and writing. She worked in partnership with her husband Alfred Rupert Hall.

Biography and career[edit]

Marie Boas was born in Springfield, Massachusetts.[1] She graduated from Radcliffe College in 1940 and got her Ph.D. from Cornell University in 1949. During World War II, she worked "in the Radiation Laboratory at MIT, where she assisted Henry Guerlac in writing the history of the laboratory and of the operational use of radar during the war."[2]

Marie Boas went to England from the US, "to work on Robert Boyle's papers, and met Hall, who was working on Isaac Newton's. In 1957 she returned to the University of California, Los Angeles; and in 1959 Hall, whose first marriage had ended in divorce, joined her there and they were married. Two years later they went to Indiana University. In 1963 they were invited back to London, to Imperial College, where Hall became the first professor of the history of science and she senior lecturer. There they trained many graduate students."[3]

She was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1955.[4] She won the George Sarton Medal, the most prestigious award of the History of Science Society, together with her husband Alfred Rupert Hall in 1981.

Her older brother was mathematician Ralph P. Boas, Jr.[2]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Albers, Donald J.; Alexanderson, Gerald L.; Reid, Constance, eds. (1990), "Ralph P. Boas, Jr.", More Mathematical People, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, pp. 22–41 .
  2. ^ a b Marie Boas Hall (1919-2009), The Times, 20 March 2009
  3. ^ Knight, David (2009-05-26). "Obituary: Rupert Hall". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-11-03. 
  4. ^ "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter B" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved July 25, 2014. 

External links[edit]