Interview with Lewis W. Cochran, February 19, 1985

Project: University of Kentucky Oral History Project

Interview Summary

Lewis W. Cochran, University of Kentucky Professor of Physics, describes attempts to get new equipment like a Vandegraph and a nuclear accelerator. He talks about Maury Rose, a nuclear theorist, who Cochran wanted to hire, and recalls showing Kentucky sites to the Atomic Energy Commission who were looking for a location to build a lab. Cochran took a leave of absence for 15 months in 1959 and 1960 during which he started work on a chapter for a book sponsored by the National Research Council. He describes his other research projects including developing a technique for measuring the diffusion and mobility of electrons in gases.

Cochran discusses important factors in recruiting new faculty and states that the key thing is to have an atmosphere of scholarship. Cochran discusses the appointment of Frank Dickey to the presidency of the University of Kentucky and events of his administration including the development of the medical center. He talks about attempts to oust Frank Peterson, Comptroller and Vice President of Business Affairs for the university, and the resignation of Frank Dickey in 1962. Cochran recalls the faculty committee that was formed to set up the search process for a new president which included Thomas D. Clark, Aubrey Brown, and himself. He states that there was a feeling that it was time for a shakeup at the university. Cochran talks about the involvement of political figures, particularly A.B. "Happy" Chandler and recalls an incident when a faculty member claimed that she was denied a salary increase due to political comments that she made.

Interview Accession

1985oh044_af202

Interviewee Name

Lewis W. Cochran

Interviewer Name

Terry L. Birdwhistell

Interview Date

1985-02-19

Interview Keyword

Bud Cochran

Interview Rights

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Interview Usage

Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Cochran, Lewis W. Interview by Terry L. Birdwhistell. 19 Feb. 1985. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Cochran, L.W. (1985, February 19). Interview by T. L. Birdwhistell. University of Kentucky Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.

Cochran, Lewis W., interview by Terry L. Birdwhistell. February 19, 1985, University of Kentucky Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.





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