Mihailo (Michael) Pupin
Aleksandra's Note: The following is a brief biography of an extraordinary man, Michael I. Pupin, a Serb who remains one of the greatest scientists and true humanitarians the world has ever known.
Scientist Mihailo Pupin
Mihailo Pupin was born on October 9th, 1854 at Idvor, which was part of the so-called Military Frontier of Austria, where the settled Serbs were technically Austrian subjects but were allowed to retain their language and customs.
Mihailo Pupin’s parents were illiterate but intelligent and well-respected
He managed in the autumn of 1879 to pass the entrance examination and become enrolled at Columbia College. After graduation in 1883, he received a scholarship for further studies in theoretical physics. The following six years he spent studying physics and electrical engineering at Cambridge, England and
Pupin’s academic career began in 1889 as a lecturer at the newly established Department of Electrical Engineering in the School of Mines of Columbia
In recognition of his success, Pupin was elected president or vice-president of the highest scientific and technical institutions, such as the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, the New York Academy of Sciences, the Radio Institute of America, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. For his inventions Pupin filed a total of 34 patents in the period between 1894 and 1934. Almost all the patents are from the field of telegraphy, telephony and radio. During his lifetime he received a large number of diplomas and medals in recognition of everything that he had invented. He published several books between 1894 and 1930. Of major interest are his Thermodynamics, and his autobiography, published for the first time in the United States in 1923, with the title From Immigrant to Inventor. Until the end of his life, Pupin maintained close contacts with his compatriots and helped them in various ways. He had set up a number of aid funds and made a considerable contribution to the drawing of Yugoslavia’s frontiers in 1919. Pupin died in New York City in 1935.
Note: This material was taken from the book Lives and Work of the Serbian Scientists, Editor Miloje Saric, published by the Serbian Academy of Science and Arts in 1996 in Belgrade.
The Center for East European
and Russian/Eurasian Studies
at the University of Chicago
“The Serb Who Connected the World”
A Celebration for the 160th Anniversary of the Birth of Michael Idvorsky Pupin
The University of Chicago
Kent Chemistry Laboratory
1020 E. 58th St. (Main Quad)
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Mihajlo Idvorsky Pupin, Ph.D., LL.D., also known as Michael, was a Serbian American physicist and physical chemist. Pupin is best known for his numerous patents, including a means of greatly extending the range of long-distance telephone communication by placing loading coils (of wire) at predetermined intervals along the transmitting wire (known as "pupinization"). Pupin was a founding member of National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) on March 3, 1915, which later became NASA.
Prof. Milan Mrksich, Northwestern University
His Grace Bishop Longin
Dr. Jasmina Mitrović-Marić
Advisor to the President of the Republic of Serbia
“The Serb Who Connected the World,” a 35-minute documentary about the life and work of Michael Idvorsky Pupin
Prof. Branko Kovačević, Dean of School of Electrical Engineering
Radmila Milentijević, PhD, University of New York City
Milenko Dželetović, PhD, Director Telecom Serbia
You are cordially invited to a reception in the Lobby of Kent Hall to be held immediately following the program
Exhibition dedicated to Pupin’s life and work is located in the first floor Kent Lobby.
This event was made possible thanks to support from:
The Department of Chemistry,
The Institute of Molecular Engineering,
The James Franck Institute,
Chicago Materials Research Center (MRSEC),
Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures
CEERES (Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies),
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia,
Office for the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region,
Consulate General of the Republic of Serbia in Chicago,
Serbian Orthodox Church Dioceses of New Gracanica and Midwestern America,
Serbian Museum St. Sava-Tesla
If you would like to get in touch with me, Aleksandra, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org