Department of Plant Pathology

Department of Plant Pathology
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1880s

1888 Michael Gerald McCarthy becomes Station Botanist at North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station

McCarthy conducted first experiments in plant pathology at the North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station.

1890s

1896 Department moved to Primrose Hall

he Department of Horticulture, Arboriculture, and Botany moved to the newly constructed Primrose Hall

GreenhouseGreenhouse

1900s

1901 Biological Division created

The Biological Division was created with coursework devoted entirely to plant pathology.

1903 Frank L. Stevens teaches first course in plant pathology

Dr. Frank L. Stevens, an instructor in the Biology department, taught the first course devoted exclusively to plant diseases.

Dr. Frank Lincoln Stevens portraitDr. Frank Lincoln Stevens portrait
September 1903 Granville Wilt

Dr. Frank L. Stevens published the first North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station bulletin describing tobacco plant disease Granville wilt.

1910s

1917 R.A. Jehle becomes extension plant pathologist

1920s

circa 1920 Plant pathology curriculum established

Plant pathology curriculum was taught within the Department of Botany.

1930s

1930 Genetics curriculum established

Genetics curriculum was taught as a component of coursework in the agronomy, zoology, and plant pathology departments.

1940s

1945 Department of Botany and Plant Pathology established

A Plant Pathology section is created within the School of Agriculture, and a new Department of Botany and Plant Pathology is also created.

1945 J.H. Jensen becomes head of the Plant Pathology section

Jensen established the Pesticide School in 1949, bringing together representatives of agricultural chemicals industry and research and extension workers.

J. H. Jensen portraitJ. H. Jensen portrait
1945 Release of Oxford 26

Plant Pathology graduate Thomas E. Smith and E.E. Clayton of the North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station release Oxford 26, the first commercial variety of tobacco with resistance to Granville wilt bacterium.

1948 C.J. Nusbaum appointed Acting Head of Plant Pathology section while Dr. Jensen served on Atomic Energy Commission

In 1948 J.H. Jensen took a year of absence to conduct a special research project for the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, examining the use of atomic energy in biology and agriculture and in the effects of radiation upon plants and animals. C.J. Nusbaum stepped in as Acting Head of Plant Pathology section in his absence.

Dr. C. J. Nusbaum, Professor J. C. Wells, and grower Clifton Carter discuss black shank disease of tobaccoDr. C. J. Nusbaum, Professor J. C. Wells, and grower Clifton Carter discuss black shank disease of tobacco

1950s

1950 Department of Botany and Plant Pathology moves to Gardner Hall
Thomas HallThomas Hall
1950 Division of Biological Sciences

Division of Biological Sciences created; plant pathology comprises the largest of five units.

1951 Plant Disease Clinic established

Plant Disease Clinic established in the Department of Plant Pathology as a diagnostic clinic for farmers and gardeners in North Carolina, processing plant specimens sent by mail or in person for immediate disease control recommendations. In 1970 it broadened to become the Plant Disease and Insect Clinic after bringing on scientists from the Department of Entomology.

Display of Plant Disease and Insect ClinicDisplay of Plant Disease and Insect Clinic
1953 Joseph N. Sasser joins faculty

Dr. J.N. Sasser, a Plant Pathology Ph.D. graduate from NC State, joined the faculty in plant pathology in 1953 as a researcher in nematology. His research contributed to the reputation of the NC State Plant Pathology Department as an international center for graduate education and research in nematology.

Dr. J. N. Sasser researching plant parasitic nematode situationsDr. J. N. Sasser researching plant parasitic nematode situations
1953 Nematode Assay Service

C.J. Nusbaum's research in nematode-incited diseases of tobacco and other crops inspired the North Carolina State legislature to fund a special laboratory, greenhouse, and personnel for research, and creation of Nematode Assay Service by NC Dept. of Agriculture, 1953.

Nematode Advisory Service EventNematode Advisory Service Event
1954 Donald E. Ellis becomes head of Plant Pathology

D.E. Ellis served as head of the faculty of Plant Pathology in the Division of Biological Sciences, and became head of the Plant Pathology Department when it was established in 1958.

Don Edwin Ellis portraitDon Edwin Ellis portrait
1954 First woman instructor in plant pathology hired

Hedwig Hirschmann, born in Fuerth, Germany, was the first woman instructor of plant pathology and the fourth woman hired as a professor at NC State. She was hired as a instructor in 1954, and advanced to full professor in 1967. Hirschmann married fellow plant pathology faculty member Anastasios Triantaphyllou in 1960 and taught at NC State until 1992. She is widely recognized for her research in nematode taxonomy.

5/24/1956 Agronomy Club Banquet

Dr. Arthur Kelman, professor of Plant Pathology, receives an award for being voted the most outstanding professor in the School of Agriculture at the first annual Agronomy Club Banquet.

1958 Department of Plant Pathology established

1960s

1964 Dr. Arthur Kelman becomes president of the American Phytopathological Society
1967 Women appointed full professors

The fourth and fifth woman hired as full professors at NC State were appointed. Hedwig Hirschmann Triantaphyllou advanced to full professor of plant pathology and Emily Quinn Pugh became a full professor of adult education.

Dr. Emily Quinn portraitDr. Emily Quinn portrait

1970s

1973 First African American woman received PhD

Nannette Smith Henderson became the first African American woman to be awarded a PhD at NC State with a degree in Plant Pathology.

1973 Robert Aycock becomes head of Plant Pathology Department

Dr. Aycock joined the plant pathology faculty at NC State in 1955, and replaced Donald E. Ellis as head of the department in 1973.

Dr. Robert Aycock and graduate student Joe Fox studying disease specimen submitted to Plant Disease ClinicDr. Robert Aycock and graduate student Joe Fox studying disease specimen submitted to Plant Disease Clinic
1975 Joseph N. Sasser receives grant for International Meloidogyne Project

Plant Pathology professor and nematologist J.N. Sasser was awarded a grant from the US Agency for International Development (USAID) which led to the development of the International Meloidogyne Project in 1981. The project involved the cooperation of more than 100 scientists from over 70 developing countries, to increase yields of food crops through research into the biology and management of root-knot nematodes.

1980s

1984 William L. Klarman becomes head of Department of Plant Pathology

Dr. Klarman became Vice Chancellor for Research at North Carolina State University in 1990.

Vice Chancellor William L. Klarman portraitVice Chancellor William L. Klarman portrait

1990s

1992 O.W. Barnett becomes head of Plant Pathology Department

2000s

2002 James Moyer becomes head of Plant Pathology Department