August 28, 1878–February 2, 1976
BY LEON L. MILLER
IFIRST MET GEORGE H. WHIPPLE in December 1938 when he interviewed me for the position of research fellow biochemist to work with him and other members of the Department of Pathology. I was impressed by his soft-spoken, taciturn manner and by his air of friendly reserve. Although I spent more than eight years in Whipple's laboratory working with him and others in many of the ongoing research problems, I came to realize that I had learned very little about Whipple personally. During department conferences or in small research meetings he stuck closely to the case discussions at hand or the research data being presented. He did not encourage wide-ranging discussion or sharp differences of opinion that might provoke controversy. However, he never discouraged a young worker from doing an experiment to test his own ideas.
To learn some little about Whipple's personal life and feelings one must read the definitive biography, George Hoyt Whipple and his Friends, published in 1963 and written by George W. Corner after more than fifty years of close association and friendship. Whipple's autobiography in Perspectives in Biology and Medicine (1959) leaves one with the feeling that he did not enjoy talking or writing about himself. I