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Early days of Current Contents

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Looking after my son Stefan and getting married
Eugene Garfield Scientist
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By that time, I had come to Philadelphia and worked for Smith Kline and when I came here in October or November of '54, I was staying at the Broadwood Hotel. My sister called me up, I think it was December or January and said, you've got to come to New York to do something, take Stefan with you because he can't stay with me anymore. Her husband, her husband had a mental breakdown, and so forth. So, to make a long story short, I was working for Ted Herdegen and Ted was an incredibly compassionate man. He, I said, I went to him and I said, 'Ted, I'm afraid I'm going to have to leave, because I can't, I've got to go up to New York and take care of my son and work things out'. He said, he, Ted Herdegen, took it upon himself to find me a small house where he lived in Mullica Hill, south of Mullica Hill in Jersey. This little house was located at the edge of an asparagus farm patch, okay. Three-roomed house. 'You'll drive to work with me every day, my sister will go and get Stefan from school and when you get home, we'll be there, okay'. That's how I got... Stefan came down, and Ted Herdegen did this for me, and his sister took care of Stefan, and we did that until the summer of '55. That summer - an amusing story - I had bought a 1955 Ford and up until that time I'd had serious problems with my leg and - remember when I had the sciatica, that started back, I had injured my leg while I was driving a defective car a long time ago, I won't get into that but, I had a hand-control car set up. Somebody had told me about paraplegics driving hand-controlled cars so, I was driving this car with hand controls and I took Stefan, I said, 'We're going to go on a vacation and the vacation will be a trip out to Colorado, okay, and, among other things, you get to see where your grandmother came from'. We went to visit Mr Adair in Colorado Springs, okay. And I gave him a copy of the article and so forth and drove back, and on the way back we stopped off in Chicago and we went to see Winnie who was my, who had been my girlfriend in New York. And she knew Stefan as an infant and that was it, we decided, after we saw her, we visited her in Chicago then she came and we got married and she move to Woodbury and that's another chapter. But, by then the paper had been published in Science, thanks to Bentley Glass.

Eugene Garfield (1925-2017) was an American scientist and publisher. In 1960 Garfield set up the Institute for Scientific Information which produced, among many other things, the Science Citation Index and fulfilled his dream of a multidisciplinary citation index. The impact of this is incalculable: without Garfield’s pioneering work, the field of scientometrics would have a very different landscape, and the study of scholarly communication would be considerably poorer.

Listeners: Henry Small

Henry Small is currently serving part-time as a research scientist at Thomson Reuters. He was formerly the director of research services and chief scientist. He received a joint PhD in chemistry and the history of science from the University of Wisconsin. He began his career as a historian of science at the American Institute of Physics' Center for History and Philosophy of Physics where he served as interim director until joining ISI (now Thomson Reuters) in 1972. He has published over 100 papers and book chapters on topics in citation analysis and the mapping of science. Dr Small is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an Honorary Fellow of the National Federation of Abstracting and Information Services, and past president of the International Society for Scientometrics and Infometrics. His current research interests include the use of co-citation contexts to understand the nature of inter-disciplinary versus intra-disciplinary science as revealed by science mapping.

Duration: 3 minutes, 54 seconds

Date story recorded: September 2007

Date story went live: 23 June 2009