1885 – 1948
Victor Nicholson was one of the first asphalt paving technologists to recognize the importance of asphalt’s adhesive qualities when combined with mineral aggregates. An authority in the field, his work served as a basis for all subsequent research on asphalt’s adhesive properties.
Mr. Nicholson spent more than 40 years of his adult life in work related to asphalt paving, beginning in 1908 when he was appointed Engineering Chemist by the City of Chicago. As such, he was responsible for paving mixtures compounded at the municipal asphalt plant and at other plants operated by private contractors furnishing materials to the city. When the city acquired two more asphalt plants, he was placed in charge of these also.
He held the position of Engineering Chemist until his death in 1948. During all these years he performed an extensive amount of painstaking research, which involved many of the complex problems faced by the asphalt paving industry.
He also wrote numerous papers dealing with various phases of asphalt technology that were published in leading scientific and technical journals in the U.S. These works are still frequently quoted and referred to in journals and books currently in use around the world.
Nicholson served as President of the Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists in 1936 and headed its Committee on Interfacial Relations for many years. He was also a member of the American Chemical Society.
Victor Nicholson was born in Chicago on April 27, 1885. He studied both the Armour Scientific Academy and at the Armour Institute of Technology, receiving his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the latter in 1906.