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Raymond R. Tucker Smoke Abatement Records

Identifier: LH-wua00367

These materials represent Tucker’s many efforts to end air pollution in St. Louis.


  • Creation: 1938-1952


Conditions Governing Access


Conditions Governing Use

Users of the collection must read and agree to abide by the rules and procedures set forth in the Materials Use Policies.

Providing access to materials does not constitute permission to publish or otherwise authorize use. All publication not covered by fair use or other exceptions is restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder, which may or may not be Washington University.

If you wish to publish or license Special Collections materials, please contact Special Collections to inquire about copyright status at (314) 935-5495 or (Publish means quotation in whole or in part in seminar or term papers, theses or dissertations, journal articles, monographs, books, digital forms, photographs, images, dramatic presentations, transcriptions, or any other form prepared for a limited or general public.)


11.5 linear feet

16 boxes

Biographical Information

Raymond R. Tucker was born in St. Louis on December 4, 1896. Tucker received his education in the public grammar schools, St. Louis University High School, and St. Louis University. After earning his A.B. degree in 1917, he received the B.S. degree from the department of mechanical engineering at Washington University in 1920. In addition, he took graduate courses at Columbia University, New York.  In choosing the field of mechanical engineering and later a career centered on smoke abatement, Tucker followed in the footsteps of his father, to whom he was very close. The elder Tucker was an engineer and in 1904 had participated in an unsuccessful program for the elimination of smoke in St. Louis.  From 1927 through 1934 Tucker was a member of the faculty of Washington University, as an associate professor of mechanical engineering. In September 1942 he returned to Washington University as head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

In 1934 Tucker to become the secretary of Mayor Bernard F. Dickmann of St. Louis, and was especially active in promoting the adoption of an anti-smoke ordinance. Tucker also served as Director of Public Safety of St. Louis and as a member of the Board of Public Service. He resigned with the change in administration in 1941, but was called back by the new mayor, William Becker, a Republican, for a short period to deal with temporary increase in smoke in the city.  During his period as Smoke Commissioner of St. Louis he established a national reputation as a leader in the anti-pollution field and in power plant design, travelling widely in the United States as a lecturer and consultant.  He was also a member of the Model Smoke Law committee of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

In the administration of Mayor Joseph M. Darst of St. Louis (1949-1953) Tucker served on the Mayor's Air Pollution Committee, was chairman of the 1949 Charter Board of Freeholders and Director of Civil Defense. In 1953 Professor Tucker was elected Mayor of St. Louis, and served three terms.  Tucker died in St. Louis on November 23, 1970.

Arrangement Note

This collection is divided into 8 series as described below:

Series 01: Smoke Commissioner’s Files (arranged alphabetically)

Series 02: General Files (arranged alphabetically)

Series 03: Smoke Consultant Files (arranged alphabetically and geographically)

Series 04: Speeches (arranged chronologically)

Series 05: Model Smoke Law (arranged chronologically)

Series 06: Missouri Valley Authority (arranged alphabetically)

Series 07: Chain of Rocks (in original order)

Series 08: General Files (arranged alphabetically)

Method of Acquisition

This material was donated to the University Archives.

Related Materials

See also WUA00366 City of St. Louis, Office of the Mayor: Raymond R. Tucker Records, 1953-1965

Processing Information

Processed by Amelia Hetherington in December 2010 and Beth Baldwin in January 2011. Updated by Sarah Schnuriger in June 2017.

Raymond R. Tucker Smoke Abatement Records
Description rules
Language of description

Revision Statements

  • 2021 February 12: Resource record updated in ArchiveSpace by Sarah Schnuriger.
  • 2022 June 16 - July 7: Additional data cleanup by Kate Goldkamp.

Collecting Area Details

Part of the Local History Collecting Area

Miranda Rectenwald
Olin Library, 1 Brookings Drive
MSC 1061-141-B
St. Louis MO 63130 US
(314) 935-5495