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Abstract

The story of Dr. Penrose’s relations with the American Philosophical Society was prepared by Edwin Grant Conklin, Secretary of the American Philosophical Society from 1901 to 1908, Executive Officer from 1936 to 1942, and President from April 1942 to April 1945, and again from April 1948 to date. His contribution is as follows: In the same year in which Dr. Richard Alexander Fullerton Penrose, Jr., was born (1863), his father, R. A. F. Penrose, M.D., Professor of Obstetrics and Diseases of Women and Children, University of Pennsylvania, was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society, and he continued to be a member for forty-five years until his death in 1908. The minutes of the meetings of the Society contain no record of his active participation in those meetings, but it is safe to assume that he prized the honor of membership in America’s premier learned society and in common with other Philadelphia members contributed to the entertainment of non-resident members and guests at the more notable meetings and celebrations of the Society. Among these celebrations during the period of the elder Penrose’s membership was the one-hundredth anniversary of the granting of the Charter of the Society, held in 1880; the one-hundredth anniversary of the death of Franklin, 1890; and the one-hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Society, held in 1893. Other notable meetings that called out all local members of the Society were held at intervals, whenever distinguished foreign members, such as Lord Kelvin or Sir Archibald Geikie, were present.

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