Wellington Amos Parlin

Photo from 1934 Dickinson College Microcosm

    Wellington Amos Parlin was born in Des Moines, Iowa on January 19, 1899. He graduated from Simpson College in 1921 with a Bachelor of Arts degree and continued on at the University of Iowa to earn his Master of Sciences. in 1922. He taught at Emory University as an Instructor in Physics between 1923-1926. Finally, he attended Johns Hopkins University to earn his Ph. D., in 1929.
    Parlin began his Dickinson career in 1930 as an Associate Professor of Physics. The College promoted him to full Professor of Physics in 1934. During his time here at Dickinson College, Parlin had many inventions. In 1935, Parlin invented an intensitometer, a machine to give a variable and known intensities of light without changing the color values and a set of color filters, which were used to determine the degree of color blindness1. He also invented a ratiometer and a refractometer2.
    In 1948, Parlin was chosen Chairman of the Physics Department. Later, in 1955, Parlin retired with the status of Professor Emeritus of Physics.
    In addition to teaching, Parlin was a veteran of both World War I and World War II. He also had four daughters. Parlin died on September 8, 1996, at the age of ninety-seven.


    1.The Dickinsonian. 63.15 (February 14, 1935) p. 1.
    2."Two Faculty Members Enter Retirement," The Dickinson Alumnus, vol.33, no.2 (September 1955): 13.


    Dickinson College, Microcosm, 1934, p. 38, Dickinson College Archives.
    "Parlin, Wellington Amos" Dropfile, Dickinson College Archives.
    Parlin, Wellington Amos. Caricatures by Rob Broderick, '52, Dickinson College Special Collections.
    The Dickinsonian. February 14, 1935, Dickinson College Archives.
    "Two Faculty Members Enter Retirement." The Dickinson Alumnus. vol. 3, no.2 (September 1955): 13, Dickinson College Archives.

    Return to Wellington Amos Parlin

-Cynthia L. Mackey '03
Class of 1934     Chronicles

Dickinson College

Dickinson 1934 is a project of Prof. Osborne's History 204 Class, Fall Semester 2000.