Person: Reuter, Harry
Harry Reuter was born in Germany but came to England as a refugee in 1935. His career was at the University of Manchester, the University of Durham and Imperial College, London. He contributed to a wide range of topics but is best know for outstanding contributions to probability, particularly to Markov processes.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Ernst Reuter was a member of the Berlin Government from 1926, responsible for transportation.
- Ernst Reuter was held in Dachau Concentration Camp but after his release he travelled to England and went to Cambridge.
- Ernst applied for Harry to have the place and by April 1935 it was agreed.
- Ernst Reuter looked for a job in England but nothing came up and he then went to Ankara in Turkey where he was offered a job.
- The Burkills assumed legal responsibility for Harry and for that of another refugee boy from Austria.
- So they asked to stay, Reuter drove his jeep back to Heidelberg in a hurry to get rations, and John Todd brought the authorization for some milk for our coffee table, where we all sat on the library terrace in the May sun.
- Süss need not have worried since Reuter and John Todd said they could avert that, and continued drinking their coffee.
- His war service at an end, Reuter returned to Cambridge to continue his studies aiming for a doctorate.
- In 1946 Max Newman approached Reuter with an offer of a position at the University of Manchester.
- Reuter decided to accept the offer from Manchester and left Cambridge without finishing his doctorate.
- The first thing to note here is that right from the beginning of his research career, Reuter was working on topics in pure mathematics, applied mathematics and physics.
- We should also explain briefly about Reuter's three collaborators on the above papers.
- At the University of Manchester, Reuter was a colleague of Walter Ledermann.
- David Kendall met Reuter at the British Mathematical Colloquium held in Durham in September 1953.
- Reuter spent sabbatical leave at Yale in the United States in 1958 where he was able to work with William Feller.
- The choice of Durham as a venue in 1963 was a natural consequence of the fact that Harry was by now Professor there, and ever since there has been a close association between that University and the LMS.
- In 1965 Reuter moved from Durham to London when he was appointed to the chair of Pure Mathematics at Imperial College.
- Prof Reuter has shown that operator theory is a natural tool for tackling many of these problems and that it may be applied to solve some of them under wide conditions.
- In 1983 Reuter retired from his chair at Imperial College and went to live in Cambridge.
- At 47 Madingley Road, one was always sure of a warm welcome from Harry and Eileen, and equally sure to find support and wisdom, and a very gentle reproof if one had done something really outrageous.
- Reuter served the London Mathematical Society as editor of the Journal and Secretary of the Society in 1966-69.
- it is for his personal qualities that those fortunate enough to have known Harry will best remember him.
- He had a first-rate mind; nothing that Harry did - research, teaching, administration - was hurried or skimped; he was a perfectionist, without being fussy.
- He had a delightful sense of humour, which he would deploy with a straight face and in his own inimitable tones (he spoke with no trace of his native German but utterly distinctively - in a Harry Reuter accent, as it were).
Born 21 November 1921, Berlin, Germany. Died 20 April 1992, Cambridge, England.
View full biography at MacTutor
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Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive