Memorable Manitobans: Douglas Roy McCullagh (1903-1949)
Born at Douglas in 1903, son of Rev. Robert Ernest McCullagh (1869-1965) and Violet Perry (1875-1965), he received his BSc, MA, and MSc degrees from the University of Manitoba. In 1927, he left Winnipeg to study at Cambridge University, where he obtained his PhD degree. He was director of biochemical research at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation from 1930 to 1942, and also Professor of Biochemistry at the Clinic’s Bunts Educational Institute. While living in Cleveland, he became co-founder, technical director, and vice-president of Benevenue Laboratories in 1939. During the Second World War, he operated a laboratory researching the manufacture of blood plasma and penicillin. In 1945, he was appointed director of the biochemical laboratory of the Schering Corporation. Following the war, he headed a commission created by the US government to investigate scientific and pharmaceutical industries in Germany.
According to his obituary, he was “one of Manitoba’s most illustrious scientists and an authority on biochemistry and endocrinology.” The author or co-author of 62 scientific publications and lecturer at scientific assemblies in Britain, Russia, the United States, and Canada, his work was known within the international scientific community. A Fellow of the Royal Institute of Chemists, he was associated with the Biochemical Society, Society of Experimental Biology and Medicine, American Chemical Society, New York Academy of Science, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
He died at Albany, New York on 17 September 1949, survived by his first wife Marion, their daughter Marion “Toni” McCullagh, and his second wife Elizabeth Green. He was buried in Elmwood Cemetery.
“Noted biochemist dies in New York,” Winnipeg Free Press, 19 September 1949. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B10, page 121]
Obituary [Violet McCullagh], Winnipeg Free Press, 25 October 1965, page 27.
Obituary [Robert Ernest McCullagh], Winnipeg Free Press, 5 November 1965, page 31.
Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.
We thank Brian Koenig for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Sarah Ramsden and Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 17 December 2016