Saul Hormats, 90, expert on chemical weapons Saul...

May 25, 2000

Saul Hormats, 90, expert on chemical weapons

Saul Hormats, who headed the Army's development of chemical warfare agents but later spoke out on the dangers they pose, died May 18 of Alzheimer's disease at Manor Care Inc.-Arden Courts in Pikesville. He was 90.

He once lived on Park Heights Avenue in Northwest Baltimore.

He retired as chief scientist of the Army's Edgewood Arsenal in 1972. During the next 20 years, he often warned of the dangers of chemical warfare, especially to civilian populations.

In testimony before the Senate, Mr. Hormats criticized the proposed resumption of nerve-gas production in the 1980s.

"Chemical warfare against a foe that has even a modicum of protection is not a very efficient way to fight a war," he said in 1982 at a Washington news conference.

He predicted in a Wall Street Journal letter published in 1985 that "millions of civilians and soldiers would die" in a chemical warfare attack.

In his 37 years at Edgewood Arsenal, Mr. Hormats was responsible for the development of the Army's chemical warfare materiel. He was also an expert in defending against toxic chemical and biological agents.

During World War II, he studied how certain chemicals would affect gas masks. He held 12 patents for chemical warfare protective devices.

After Berlin fell to the Allies in the spring of 1945, he visited the city and discussed chemical warfare with the German army staff.

At that time, he studied sarin, a deadly gas that was found in a German shell.

When he opened the metal casing, he suffered night blindness for a week despite having taken safety precautions.

He also studied the effects of radiation on military and civilian populations during a nuclear attack. In 1971, he led a delegation of scientists to a NATO meeting.

In 1995, he was widely quoted in the news media as an expert on the gas that a fringe group released into a crowded Tokyo subway.

Although most of his research at Edgewood was focused on military issues, Mr. Hormats also studied air pollution and its control.

Born in Troy, N.Y., he received a degree in engineering from the Johns Hopkins University in 1931. He also studied at the University of Maryland.

He was a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a member of the American Chemical Society.

He had been a lieutenant colonel in the Army Reserve and a member of Har Sinai Congregation in Baltimore.

Funeral services were held Friday.

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, the former Ruth Libauer; a son, Robert Hormats of New York, N.Y.; a daughter, Judy A. Stahl of Islamorada, Fla.; a brother, Leonard Hormats of Baltimore; and two grandchildren.

Anna C. Schanze, 83, waitress at Obrycki's, Love's

Anna C. Schanze, a waitress who had worked for more than four decades in two of the city's most famous restaurants, died in her sleep May 16 at ManorCare Ruxton. She was 83.

In 1945, Mrs. Schanze, then a waitress in an Italian restaurant, wandered into Joe Obrycki's Pratt Street restaurant and bar for a drink. She ended up being hired as a waitress at the restaurant, which soon became one of the city's most renowned crab houses, favored by sports figures, politicians and other celebrities.

Mrs. Schanze worked at Olde Obrycki's Crab House on Pratt Street and later at the Lombard Street location until it burned down in the 1970s.

Mrs. Schanze's life was chronicled in Samuel G. Freedman's book "The Inheritance. How Three Families and America moved from Roosevelt to Reagan," which was published by Simon & Schuster in 1996.

Later, she was a waitress at Love's Restaurant, known for its hearty fare and sizable Manhattan and martini cocktails, until retiring in 1990.

The former Anna G. Berger, a lifelong Highlandtown resident, attended city public schools until leaving to help support her family. Her marriage to William Schanze ended in divorce.

"Her work was her life. She loved being around politicians, gamblers and businessmen," said her daughter, Sharon M. Bowen of Lutherville.

Services were held Friday.

In addition to her daughter, she is survived by a son, Marion C. Schanze of Highlandtown; and a granddaughter, Beth Ann Rimmels of Westbury, N.Y.

Emily Wheelock Reed, 89, librarian at Pratt

Emily Wheelock Reed, a former Pratt librarian who fought for intellectual freedom, died Friday of heart failure at Broadmead, the Cockeysville retirement community where she had resided since 1989. She was 89.

The former head of adult services at the Enoch Pratt Free Library, she was a career librarian who clashed with segregationist Alabama legislators in 1959 and 1960. At issue was a children's book, "The Rabbits' Wedding," by Garth Williams, in which white and black rabbits marry.

Miss Reed, then director of Alabama's state library services, defended the book, which segregationist legislators wanted to have banned, and they threatened to cut her budget. The next year, she found another job.

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