Landmark Frequently Asked Questions

National Historic Chemical Landmarks Program FAQ

Q: Can individuals who are not ACS members nominate subjects for the program?

A: Only ACS bodies (local sections, committees and divisions) can nominate subjects for the NHCL program. However, the ACS sponsor may delegate responsibility for drafting the nomination to anyone they choose. A letter of support from the ACS sponsor is required in all cases.

Q: I have a subject in mind to nominate, but not a location. How should I proceed?

A: The NHCL Subcommittee and NHCL Program Manager will review the proposal. If it is seen as a promising subject for the program, they will assist you in identifying potential sites and coordinating with host organizations at those sites. Contact the NHCL Program Manager for feedback specific to your proposal.

Q: Can I nominate my university’s chemistry lab building?

A: Yes, you can. However in most cases the building itself cannot meet the NHCL program’s first criteria — seminal science. Instead, nominators should focus on key developments that took place within the building. Past examples include Wetherill Laboratory at Purdue University (recognized for contributions in chemical education and developments in organic synthesis); Lawrence Hall at the University of Kansas (discovery of helium in natural gas); and the Mellon Institute of Industrial Research at Carnegie Mellon University (an early site of collaboration between academic training and industrial research).

Q: I’d like to nominate a subject, but it doesn’t fall into the program’s “Medical Milestones,” Cradles of Chemistry,” or other categories shown on the website. Can I proceed?

A: Those categories are used only to group subjects for the benefit of our online audience. The NHCL Subcommittee welcomes nominations of subjects outside of these categories.

Q: A National Historic Chemical Landmark in my area has been closed/destroyed/renovated/changed ownership. What will happen to the Landmark?

A: If a NHCL has been closed, destroyed, abandoned, etc., please contact the NHCL Program Manager, who will attempt to contact the site owner/administrator and the ACS local section in the area to develop a plan for the NHCL plaque.

Note to Nominators

If you aren’t sure if the subject you wish to nominate has potential to meet the program's criteria or if you would like feedback before approaching prospective sponsors and/or host organizations, contact the NHCL Program Manager for preliminary review and specific recommendations.