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Born: Mar 17, 1926

Date of Passing: Jun 26, 2012

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HUGH JOHN ANDERSON Passed peacefully away on Tuesday, June 26, 2012 at the Health Sciences Centre, St. John's, NL. Hugh John Anderson was born on March 17, 1926 in Winnipeg, the son of Hugh C. and Margaret H. (Nell) Anderson. After attending Kelvin High School he took the Honors Chemistry program at the University of Manitoba. Following graduation he was asked to combine his Master's research and courses with full-time teaching elementary chemistry as a junior lecturer for two academic years. He then entered the doctoral program in organic chemistry at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois as The Texas Company Research Fellow. He then spent a year at Oxford University as a combined National Research Council Overseas Postdoctoral Fellow and Corday Morgan Commonwealth Fellow of the Chemical Society of London. In September, 1953 Hugh Anderson returned to Canada and joined the chemistry department of the Memorial University of Newfoundland where he spent the rest of his career, during which the student enrollment rose from 600 to about 16,000. He served the university on many committees over the years, especially as chair of the Senate Graduate Studies Committee during the establishment of several masters programs and the beginning of the doctoral program. At Memorial he published over thirty research papers in synthetic organic chemistry, review articles, and the chapter of a book. Most were in collaboration with his chemistry colleague, Charles Loader. However, he was largely known for his teaching of the first organic chemistry course In 1981 he was presented with the Union Carbide Award of the Chemical Institute of Canada for his teaching. Hugh Anderson retired in 1991 after 38 years on the faculty and was made Professor Emeritus. He was honored by a former student in having an undergraduate chemistry scholarship named after him. Cremation has taken place. There will be no visitation or service. Interment will take place at Brookside Memorial Cemetery, Winnipeg, Manitoba. Arrangements entrusted to Carnell's Funeral Home, 329 Freshwater Rd., St. John's, NL. To send a message of condolence or sign the memorial guest book, please visit

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jun 30, 2012

Condolences & Memories (5 entries)

  • I was so sorry to just now hear of the passing of my second cousin, Hugh Anderson. I found out from the return of a Christmas card that I sent to him. He was a very intelligent man. I fondly remember his visits to our home in Illinois along with his mother, whom we referred to as Aunt Nellie. It is interesting to see all the accomplishments he achieved at the University. I know that it was his life's work that he cherished the most. - Posted by: Sheryl Albrecht (Second Cousin) on: Feb 03, 2015

  • In September 1956 Dr Anderson taught Chem I which was my first chemistry course at MUN. I took several more undergraduate and graduate courses from Dr Anderson and he became my research supervisor for my MSc which I completed in 1965 with 2 publications and a thesis. He was an outstanding teacher and mentor, always encouraging, enthusiastic, and cool as a cucumber if things went wrong as they sometimes did in a research lab. No mentor of my experience did a better job than Hugh Anderson, I really owe my teaching career and love of the science to his example. Many graduate supervisors could learn lots from him - tho it's a bit late now. I stayed in touch with him over the years and it wss always a joy to have a meal with him in Victoria, BC or to drive the highways and byways of Newfoundland's Avalon peninsula ss he regaled me with stores about the early days of the University at Parade street and later on Elizabeth Avenue. He really had lots to do with shaping the direction of the graduate studies program and modernizing the academic programs partly because of his influence with Mose Morgan. The stories were great and the cast of characters remarkably dedicated to the project of building a new University in NL - Monnie Mansefield, Sadie Organ, George Story, Stan Carew, Herb Jackson - many of whom I knew, some of who taught me,and indeed some of whom were there from my mother's day in the mid 1930s. Hugh Anderson made a huge contribution to the university financially as well as through his teaching and administrative leadership and It is my singular regret that the University did not see fit to reward him with an honorary degree. Eleanor Roosevelt got one (which I did not object to) but frankly Hugh Anderson made a greater contribution to the University than either her or several other's I will refrain from mentioning. I was honored to introduce him to at College teacher event some 6 or so years ago, and the participants were delighted with his presentation on the history of Cod Liver Oil in Newfoundland - perhaps you could remember that the next time you drive down Bennett Avenue. His notes on the early history of the chemistry department are available in the library - I am mentioned as one of two summer students who worked for him at Parade Street and who moved to the new facility at the end of August. My small footnote in history. The next year he was largely responsible for the addition of outstanding new faculty J M W Scott and Eric Bullock from the UK and Don Barton from the US and that was the beginning of a great expansion in the quantity and quality of undergrad and graduate research and teaching - of which I was one of the great beneficiaries. MUN in those days was a great place to be, and no academic experience subsequently held a candle to the times at MUN with Hugh Anderson. - Posted by: Cameron Hopkins (H J Anderson's first graduate student) on: Aug 11, 2014

  • I was so sorry to hear of cousin Hugh's passing. I have many fond memories of his yearly visits to Winnipeg and our discussion regarding how they make red lipstick red...He was a true gentleman, very kind, humble and will be greatly missed. For those persons in Winnipeg who may like to say farewell, we will be attending the Brookside Cemetery Administration building at 1 pm on Thursday July12th for his interment. - Posted by: Shanne Roberts Kernested (cousin) on: Jul 09, 2012

  • I always enjoyed your visits to Kenora and seeing you in St. Johns. I am sorry that we will not be seeing you in St.Johns this summer. You will be missed. - Twila - Posted by: Twila Roberts (Cousin) on: Jul 08, 2012

  • I will always remember your visits with us in Ottawa. You will be missed. - Posted by: David Fox (cousin) on: Jul 01, 2012

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