Gladys Owens was just 19 years of age when she arrived to work in the town of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. It was 1945 and she was to spend 8 months working there as a technician on the Manhattan Project. Gladys would become one of the “Calutron Girls” whose role, though none of them knew it at the time, was key to the building of the first atomic bomb.
Fanny Hesse (1850-1934) was a lab technician and technical illustrator who introduced agar to the study of bacteria revolutionising microbiology.
Otto Baumbach (1882-1966) was a glass blower whose work in Manchester was vital to Nobel Laureate Ernest Rutherford.
Hans Crol (?-1591) was a German goldsmith and instrument maker who worked for Tycho Brahe between c.1584 and 1591.
Joanna Chorley (1925-2019) worked at the code cracking centre Bletchley Park during WW2 on the worlds first electronic computer – Colossus.
Science and art have always been a team effort; however, it is going to take a change in our perception of technical skill before everyone gets fully acknowledged for their contribution to that team.
A group of technicians met together to share their knowledge and skills about extractions and digests but also to discuss how to deal with laboratory users questions.
Andy Connelly searches for technicians in fiction and finds a technician-shaped hole.
Gladys Trim (1915-?) started work in the Veterinary Department at the Wellcome Laboratories aged 15. Initially she was not doing technical work but helping other
women in the office with the filing. After 42 years she had worked her way up to senior technician with her name included on several publications.
Blanche J. Lawrence (1921-?) graduated from Tuskegee University before going on to work as a technician and then junior chemist on the Manhattan Project.