Hamilton, W. S. (Wallis Sylvester), 1911-2001
- Existence: 1911 - 2001
Wallis Sylvester Hamilton was born in Palmyra, New Jersey, on February 14, 1911. He earned his B.S. (1935) and M.S. (1939) in civil engineering from the Carnegie Institute of Technology and his Ph.D. (1943) in hydraulics and mechanics from the University of Iowa.
Hamilton came to Northwestern University in 1943 as a lecturer in civil engineering. Promoted to assistant professor in 1945 and to associate professor in 1948, he became a full professor in 1953.
In 1937 Hamilton joined a small group of engineers who were using a scale model to develop the hydraulic design of flood control dams above Pittsburgh, Pensylvannia. This set the direction for his future research interests which included velocity patterns around ship models, resistance of barges and spray characteristics and directional stability of taxiing flying boats. He also studied the effects of waves, damage from cavitation and the body forces and properties of the crust and mantle of the earth.
Hamilton retired in 1977. He had married Eva Mary Blichfeldt in June, 1937; the couple had one child, Mary Susan, born on January 4, 1947.