Atomic Heritage Foundation

In partnership with the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History National Museum of Nuclear Science & History

Join Today as an Atomic History Patron Member

In Memoriam: Watson C. Warriner, Sr.

In Memoriam: Watson C. Warriner, Sr.


We are sad to report that our friend and Manhattan Project veteran Watson C. Warriner, Sr. passed away on September 17, 2015 at the age of 97. He was passionate about Manhattan Project history and preserving the sites, especially Hanford and the trains.

Warriner graduated from Virginia Tech in 1938 with a degree in chemical engineering. He was then hired by the DuPont company to work in their Engineering Department. He was sent to DuPont headquarters in Wilmington, where he was assigned to the heavy water group. In early 1944, he was transferred to the separations area and sent to Hanford, WA. He helped design and build the chemical separation plants at Hanford (also known as the 221 T-Plant or "Queen Marys"). After the war, he worked at the Savannah River Plant in South Carolina designing facilities. In 1955, he transferred to the Plastics Department of DuPont, and worked in sales for thermoplastics until retiring in 1981. 

He remembered celebrating V-J Day in New York City with his wife, Ann. "Ann and I decided that we would get in my convertible coupe and go into Manhattan and celebrate, as did hundreds of other people. It went on all night long. We had just a great, great, great night. The bars were just flooded with people. It was a merry fair." 

He loved to travel, especially by train. In 2013 he helped the Atomic Heritage Foundation develop a pamphlet, Journey to Destiny, on trains at Hanford during the Manhattan Project and his own journey across the country to Pasco, WA.

For more about Warriner and his important work on the Manhattan Project, visit his profile page or watch his interview on "Voices of the Manhattan Project."