Arthur C. Cope
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Arthur C. Cope
Arthur Clay Cope
Born(1909-06-27)June 27, 1909
DiedJune 4, 1966(1966-06-04) (aged 56)
Alma materButler University in Indianapolis BS
University of Wisconsin-Madison Ph.D.
Known forCope elimination,
Cope rearrangement
AwardsMember of the National Academy of Sciences
Scientific career
FieldsOrganic chemistry
InstitutionsColumbia University,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Doctoral advisorSamuel M. McElvain

Arthur C. Cope (June 27, 1909 - June 4, 1966) was a highly successful and influential organic chemist and member of the National Academy of Sciences. He is credited with the development of several important chemical reactions which bear his name including the Cope elimination and the Cope rearrangement.

Cope was born on June 27, 1909, in Dunreith, Indiana. He received a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Butler University in Indianapolis in 1929 and a PhD in 1932 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His research continued at Harvard University in 1933 as a National Research Council Fellow. In 1934, he joined the faculty of Bryn Mawr College. There, his research included the first syntheses of a number of barbiturates including delvinyl sodium. At Bryn Mawr, Cope also developed a reaction involving the thermal rearrangement of an allyl group which eventually became known as the Cope rearrangement.

In 1941, Cope moved to Columbia University where he worked on projects associated with the war effect including chemical warfare agents, antimalarial drugs, and treatments for mustard gas poisoning. In 1945, he moved to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to become the head of the Department of Chemistry.


Today, the Arthur C. Cope Award, in honor of his memory, is given out annually by the American Chemical Society to the most outstanding organic chemist.


  1. ^ "ACS Award in Pure Chemistry". American Chemical Society. Retrieved 2014.


  • Roberts, John D. & Sheehan, John C. (1991). "Arthur Clay Cope" (PDF). Biographical Memoirs of the National Academy of Sciences. 60: 17-27.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)

External links

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