Stunkard, Horace Wesley

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Exist Dates

August 23, 1889 - September 10, 1989

Biographical or Historical Note

Horace W. Stunkard, a researcher in the American Museum of Natural History's Dept. of Invertebrates, was a biologist specializing in parasitology. Stunkard obtained his doctorate in 1916 from the school of parasitology developed by Henry Baldwin Ward at the University of Illinois and accepted a biology instructorship at NYU. After service in World War I, he resumed his teaching, becoming chairman of NYU's Biology Dept. by 1925. Stunkard was an energetic and prolific teacher, researcher, writer and editor. In 1921, he was appointed an AMNH research assistant without salary, but with laboratory and library privileges. After retiring from NYU in 1954, he worked full time at the AMNH, publishing 275 research papers; his last one appeared in 1988. Stunkard also served as biologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and as parasitologist for the Bronx Zoo. He was a section editor for Biological abstracts and a consulting editor in invertebrate zoology for the McGraw-Hill encyclopedia of science and technology. Stunkard's research was invaluable in the fields of medical and economic parasitology; among his many achievements, he identified the parasite that causes schistosomiasis and "swimmer's itch" in humans, and discovered the oribatid mite that acts as an intermediate host to the sheep tapeworm, Moniezia expansa. Until 1986, Stunkard continued to spend 18 hours a week at his AMNH laboratory; the museum awarded him its Gold Medal for Distinguished Achievement in Science in 1971. Stunkard died in 1989 at the age of 101.


    From biographical note for Stunkard's archive collection at the AMNH Library, Mss .S78, written by Ann Herendeen.

Related Corporate, Personal, and Family Names

American Museum of Natural History. Department of Invertebrates
associated dates: 1921--

Related Resources

Horace W. Stunkard papers, [1944?-1988?]
Repository: AMNH Special Collections, Mss .S78

Written by: Iris Lee
Last modified: 2018 October 5


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