History (how we learned about organic chemistry)

Why we study chemical history
Prerevolutionary contributions - Scheele

Lavoisier & the Chemical Revolution: Analysis
(Questions indicated by *)
Portrait (note the problem re. Fig. 10)
Preface (1789)
Elements & Oxidation *2
How to determine Gas Density
Calorimeter *4
Combustion of Phosphorus and Carbon *4
Quantitative Chemical "Formulae" *4

Combustion Analysis Lavoisier/Prout/Liebig/Dumas (1788-1841)
Liebig's Kaliapparat and the etymology of K and Na (1831)
Distillation and the "Liebig" Condenser (1771)

1828-1851 Isomerism
Radical (Dualistic) vs. Type (Unitary, Substitution) Theory

 Wöhler/Berzelius Letters about Urea (1828)
Wöhler's Urea Paper (analysis and isomerism preview) (1828)
Berzelius Coins the Term Isomeric (1830)
Wöhler/Berzelius on Liebig, Isomerism, & Organic Chemistry (1830-35)
Wöhler/Liebig Discovery of Benzoyl Radical (by analysis) (1832)
Dumas's Panegyric on the Radical Theory (1837)
Simple Alkane Etymology
Wöhler's Spoof of the Type Theory (1840)
Competing Views of Organic Chemistry (~1851)

1858-1860s Constitution
"Nature and Sequence of Bonds"

Couper On a New Chemical Theory (1858)
Kekulé on the Superiority of his Sausage Formulae (1865)
Other Molecular Diagrams and Models (mid 1860s)
Cannizzaro on Models (1872)

1869-1880 Configuration
"Arrangement of Atoms in Space"

Paternò's Tetrahedral Carbons (1869)
Lieben to Paternò on Atoms in Space (1869)
Koerner Proves 6-fold Symmetry of Benzene (1869)
van't Hoff's Tetrahedral Carbon (configuration) (1875)
Kolbe's Criticism of van't Hoff (1877)

1885- Conformation
"Strain Energy"

Baeyer Proposes Strain Theory (1885)
Sachse Identifies Conformational Isomers; Baeyer objects (1890-93)
Fischer on Models and the Fischer Projection (1891)
Mohr Vindicates Sachse (1918)

Return to Chem 125 Homepage
go to Time Line
return to Syllabus

copyright 2001 J.M.McBride