Carleton C. Murdock came to Cornell’s Physics Department in 1908. He will be remembered as the personification of the legendary professor, a man whose very presence created an atmosphere of dignity and humanity, of intellect and service.
He was elected Dean of the University Faculty in 1945 and brought to the office an unfailing dignity and courtesy, together with strength and wisdom, during a time of difficulty for the University. Following the end of World War II, a surge in enrollments occurred, but so did inflation that eroded the value of Faculty salaries and impaired Faculty morale. The emergence of McCarthyism deeply unsettled the campus. The retirement of President Day left the campus groping for leadership. During those times, Dean Murdock gave stability to a shaken faculty, and his term was extended until a new president had been installed and his own retirement was at hand. Professor Murdock retired as Professor Emeritus in 1953.
He passed away on June 5, 1971.