Robert William Chapman (born 27 December 1866 in Buckinghamshire, England) obtained his formal qualifications at the University of Melbourne (BA 1886, MA, BE 1888) and worked briefly in railway construction before being appointed assistant lecturer in mathematics and physics at the University of Adelaide in 1889. In 1901 he was appointed lecturer in engineering and in 1907 became the first professor of Engineering. From 1910-19 he was Professor of Mathematics and Mechanics, then again Professor of Engineering from 1920 until his retirement in 1937, when he was made Professor Emeritus.
Chapman was foundation member and president of the South Australian Institute of Engineers (1913), president of the South Australian Institute of Surveyors (1917-29) and foundation councillor and later president of the Institution of Engineers Australia. He was also closely associated with the S.A. School of Mines (where he taught mathematics in his early years in Adelaide), serving as President of its Council from 1939-42. He was awarded the Peter Nicol Russell medal by the Institution of Engineers in 1928 and the W.C. Kernot memorial medal of the University of Melbourne in 1931, and is himself commemorated by the Institution of Engineers' R.W. Chapman medal and by a prize at the University of Adelaide. His publications include The Elements of Astronomy for Surveyors (London, 1919) and Reinforced Concrete (Adelaide, 1924).
These papers were received by the Library from the Civil Engineering Department with a collection of books and journals in 1996, and only transferred to Special Collections in January 2004. The illuminated address was transferred from the State Library of SA in January 2008.
|7-Aug-1937||Illuminated address presented to Sir Robert William Chapman||-|