Thank you for another wonderful year. We are grateful for your support and help sharing this important piece of history.

This year we celebrated the 110 th  anniversary of the patent granted to Leo Baekeland for the invention of Bakelite.

  • 7th Biennial Baekeland Symposium in Spain
  • Bedford Playhouse screening
  • Nancy Byck Welch jewelry project update
  • Public television airings updates
  • Upcoming screenings at Yonkers Historical Society and American Chemical Society’s National Meeting and Expo 
  • New videos and interviews
Hugh introduces the film
7 th Biennial Baekeland Symposium in
Tarragona, Spain

The Symposium was beautifully organized and well attended. Professor Angels Serra of the Department of Analytical and Organic Chemistry at the University Rovira i Virgili and her team created and orchestrated four days of presentations and special events.

The short version of our film with Spanish subtitles was shown during the opening ceremonies on October 15 th . During registration, DVDs (some with Spanish subtitles) were distributed to the attendees. 

Hugh and Sherry reunited with old friends and made some new ones. They walked to many sights and vistas thoughout Tarragona. Delicious meals were enjoyed.

Mostly at night, demonstrations for the separation of Catalonia from Spain took place in the town square in front of the hotel where the Symposium was held and the attendees stayed. On the closing day of the Symposium, 500 thousand demonstrators marched on Barcelona making it difficult for attendees to travel.  

We are grateful to Professor Serra for taking such good care of Hugh and Sherry; and for creating such a memorable experience.
Sherry, Hugh, Dr. and Mrs. Gerhard Maier, Creative Polymer Technologies
Poster winners with Prof. Bartek Tykowski, University Rovia i Virgili, Angels Serra, Symposium Organizer and Eric Goethals, Emeritus Ghent University
Angels Serra, Symposium Organizer and Prof. Dennis Smith, Mississippi State U.
Human pyramid (the castellers) "castles"
Bedford Playhouse screening and Q&A...
On November 3 rd , the complete film was presented at the Bedford Playhouse in Bedford, New York by the Bedford, Mount Kisco and New Castle Historical Societies. 

The audience was actively engaged in the Q&A afterwards. On the panel, Hugh and John were joined by Burk Wagner and Carl Kaufmann.

The questions and comments concentrated primarily on the plastic problem.
Nancy Byck Welch project photography
On November 21st and December 16th, Hugh, John, Marc and Burk continued to photograph Nancy Byck Welch’s Bakelite Embed Art jewelry collection. This project began three years ago and so far has resulted in hundreds of images, scans of printed material including brochures and several videos, some of which are available for viewing on our  website .

The story of Nancy’s father, Lawrence “Larry” Byck and her collection are important additions to Leo Baekeland’s legacy and the history of Bakelite. We thank Nancy for sharing her collection and memories with us.
Image embedded in Bakelite resin
Necklace, earrings and bracelet are called a Parure
Nancy explained to us that the pearls are Bakelite beads dipped three or more times in a solution containing Nacre.
Bakelite bangles unlike those made of Catalin because they are translucent
"Moon Pendant", Bakelite clad in silver
Red faceted bangles
These Bakelite beads were hand faceted
National public television airings
Beyond the many public television airdates around the country facilitated by NETA, our film was shown five times on HEC-TV, St. Louis, MO.

Because of their fund drives and the holidays, public television station airdates for our film were diminished in November and December. We anticipate more in the New Year.

For upcoming airdates, visit our website .
Upcoming screenings...

The Yonkers Historical Society has scheduled a screening with an accompanying exhibit of Bakelite, Baekeland’s laboratory glassware and Baekeland family heirlooms at 1:30 PM on Saturday, March 7, 2020 at the
Grinton I. Will Library in Yonkers, New York.

On March 23, 2020 at 11:40 PM, our film will be shown at the
American Chemical Society’s National Meeting and Expo in Philadelphia, PA. We thank ACS member, Gary Patterson for his assistance initiating this opportunity. Hugh is planning to attend.
New videos and interview available on the

  • Joseph Zuccarelli, longtime employee of The Bakelite Corporation and Union Carbide/Dow. View > 

  • 2009 Bakelite Roundtable research session with Director, John Maher and five employees at the Union Carbide/Dow facility in Bound Brook, New Jersey. View >

  • Recently, Hugh was interviewed by Redding, CT resident and owner of Retro Radio Farm Allen Chiang. The two met during Allen's exhibition and presentation at the Mark Twain Library three years ago. View>
All Things Bakelite: The Age of Plastic
Official Trailer
All Things Bakelite: The Age of Plastic
Official Trailer with Open Captioning