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Cedric Mims - Professor, medical microbiologist and writer

Open Access

The Australian National University, Emeritus Faculty Inc.

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CollectionsANU Emeritus Faculty Oral History Project
Title: Cedric Mims - Professor, medical microbiologist and writer
Author(s): Mims, Cedric
Editor(s): Stewart, Peter
Keywords: Cedric Mims;ANU;Emeritus Faculty;oral history
Publisher: The Australian National University, Emeritus Faculty Inc.
Cedric Arthur Mims was born in London in 1924 to a tax inspector/lay preacher father and homemaker mother. Cedric's parents insisted on strict religious tutelage for Cedric and his sister and two brothers, though the extent of this parental preparation would sadly be limited by the misfortune which struck the family when Cedric was just six - his then pregnant mother died of an infection, and a few months later his father died of pneumonia. The Mims children then spent some years precariously perched, partly in orphanages and the rest of their young lives with assorted relatives. With improving fortune, Cedric went to Mill Hill School, which provided him with a sound and settled education for the rest of his school days. Cedric had set his heart set on studying medicine but his business-man grandfather, as his guardian, refused to countenance this. However, he did compromise to the extent of allowing Cedric to enrol in chemistry at University College London, with the expectation that Cedric would become an industrial chemist and from there make his way into corporate industry. Cedric quietly added zoology units to his science studies, to keep his dream of medicine alive. He graduated four years later with the then rare achievement of first class honours, and the distinction of having had among his teachers JBS Haldane and GP Wells (son of HG Wells). As he graduated BSc, Cedric now aged 21, exercised his legal independence from his grandfather to enter medicine, enrolling at Middlesex Hospital Medical School. He graduated from there in 1952. Cedric then began his way up the career ladder of a bright young medical graduate. But as he did this, he came across a book on the biology of gorillas in the wild, a subject which seized his imagination. With his developing array of skills in science and medicine, he soon found himself in Uganda with the Colonial Medical Service, investigating tropical fevers. Happily too at this time, Cedric met and married Vicki, a nurse-manager from Middlesex Hospital. They stayed in Africa for three years.


File Description SizeFormat Image
ANUEF_OHP_Cedric_Mims.mp3Interview Audio File69.69 MBMPEG Audio
ANUEF_OHP_Cedric_Mims_th.jpgPhotograph16.57 kBJPEG ImageThumbnail
ANUEF_OHP_Cedric_Mims_Interview.pdfInterview Synopsis81.52 kBAdobe PDFThumbnail

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