Medicine: Success Story

At 73, Dr. Benjamin Minge Duggar made the greatest discovery of his career. For two years he and his associates at Lederle Laboratories, Pearl River, N.Y. had been studying bits of soil from all parts of the U.S. Dr. Duggar, who retired in 1943 as professor of botany at the University of Wisconsin, was looking for a new antibiotic to place beside the two best known, penicillin and streptomycin.

After isolating 3,400 strains from 600 samples of soil, Dr. Duggar found one in 1945 that looked promising. Because it was a golden yellow color,...