This information was obtained from the special production brochure entitled "DENTAL MATERIALS GROUP -- The First Fifty Years" that was prepared originally in 1989 by Floyd Peyton (now deceased, 1994) and then edited by Jack Mitchem.

Purposes of the Group

The purposes of the group, as put forth in the original petition to the IADR, are as valid today as they were in 1938.

1. To provide a clearing house for the exchange of technical information and studies in order to avoid duplication of effort.
2. To provide recognition for and encouragement of worthy research in dental materials.
3. To discuss and evaluate methods for the testing of dental materials, both new and old, together with specifications for testing.
4. To raise the standards of research in the dental industry in general and as a result to create a mutual feeling of trustfulness and understanding between the industry and the profession, as should exist.

Founders ("the founding twenty")

The DMG was founded in 1938 at the IADR meeting by the following individuals: (1) J.R. Beall, (2) R.C. Brumfield, (3) H.J. Caul, (4) P.S. Collins, (5) W.H. Crawford, (6) W.S. Crowell, (7) L.W. Dunham, (8) W.B. Holmes, (9) E.S. Kutzelman, (10) T.E. Moore, (11) G.C. Paffenbarger, (12) F.A. Peyton, (13) K.W. Ray, (14) J.S. Shell, (15) E.W. Skinner, (16) K.H. Strader, (17) W.T. Sweeney, (18) N.O. Taylor, (19) S.D. Tylman, and (20) W.C. Whittemore.

The Beginnings (by Dr. Floyd Peyton, 1988)

Fifty years have passed since 20 individuals came together to form a unique organization -- The Dental Materials Group. These scientists (see Appendix I) were the first to petition the IADR for permission to form a group interested in a specific scientific discipline.

The following review of the early history of the group is taken from a write-up done for the 25th anniversary. It is reprinted here in part and prefaced with a letter from Floyd Peyton, dated March 28, 1988, to Allen Steinbock, President DMG, 1988-1989. Dr. Peyton was the prime promoter for the group and the first chairman; he is also the sole survivor of the original 20.

Time passes quickly and it is difficult to realize now that it will be fifty years, on 24 October that twenty men came together in St. Louis, at the Mayfair Hotel, to consider the formation of a group with a common interest in the materials used in the practice of dentistry. The St. Louis meeting was the first for the Dental Materials Group. Those twenty persons included representatives from the dental profession, schools, government agencies and manufacturers.

At the meeting a Chairman, F. Peyton; a Secretary, E. Skinner; and an Executive Committee were elected. The persons present each contributed $1.00 for the expenses of the Secretary. As a result a new organization was started with a total of $20.00. There were no research papers presented at this first meeting.

At the time of the IADR meeting in Cleveland, Ohio, in March 1939, a petition for a Dental Materials Group had been presented for Council consideration. The Group organization had been established with elected officers and a constitution and by-laws was completed. Four reports related to dental materials were included in the 1939 IADR program. The Council and membership at the Cleveland meeting passed a resolution to establish a Dental Materials Group within IADR.

Word spread of the formation of the Group. A Treasurer was named, W.T. Sweeney, and the annual membership dues were increased to $2.00. The report of the Treasurer, August 1940, indicated that forty-one persons had joined the group.

Conditions have changed significantly since the early meetings of the Group. New and improved materials have been developed. Methods of evaluation have been established. It is believed that these improvements have contributed to improved dental practice. From a modest beginning the Dental Materials Group has developed into an International group of importance.

Sincerely yours,

Floyd A. Peyton

The Maturing Years (by Dr. Jack Mitchem, 1989)

The idea of teaching the subject of dental materials as a specialty dates back many years to the period when the few early courses in this field were classified as Dental Metallurgy.

As the field widened through the introduction of new types of materials and as interest grew in this area, more and more people became concerned with the properties of the materials available and interest also grew in obtaining those with the most desirable qualities. With increasing interest, more attention was directed to technics for the proper use of materials.

The desirable interest in dental materials was evident to the Research Commission of the American Dental Association as early as the late 1920's and the commission set up its first research fellowship at the National Bureau of Standards in 1928.

In the following ten years the interest in dental materials grew rapidly and more people became primarily concerned with the development, production and proper use of dental materials.

A number of people that were in this interested group were members of the International Association for Dental Research, and after some preliminary conferences, organized the 1938 meeting referred to in Floyd Peyton's letter. An executive committee was established at the meeting and consisted of the following: from dental schools -- Dr. S.D. Tylman and Dr. W.E. Skinner; from industrial organizations -- T.E. Moore and N.O. Taylor; and from the American Dental Research Commission Staff -- G.C. Paffenbarger and W.T. Sweeney.

Dr. Marcus A. Ward and Dr. Daniel A. Lynch joined the meeting for a brief time.

Dr. Ward was then President-elect of the American Dental Association and spoke briefly on the need for an organization of research men in dental materials and of its possible future in relation to the dental schools and profession.

Dr. Lynch discussed the relationship of the group with the American Dental Association Research Commission and pledged the support of the Research Commission in the light of the proposed aims of the new organization.

It was moved, seconded and carried that the new organization go on record as wholeheartedly approving the work of the American Dental Association Research Commission.

A petition for affiliation with the I.A.D.R. as the Dental Materials Group was presented by Dr. Skinner.

The Chairman then called for a discussion of the criteria for the selection of members and a tentative list of prospective members was presented. (In those days, the IADR required a prospective member to have published and to be active in research.) Those individuals in industry who desired membership had been discouraged or denied permission by their employers to publish their research. It it of interest to note that through the efforts of an early member -- Dr. John Nielsen -- this problem was gradually resolved. John was director of research at Jelenko and also chairman of the metallurgy department at New York University.

The ultimate answer to this last problem was to set up two types of memberships, Associate Members and Active Members. An Active Membership was based upon membership in the International Association for Dental Research and Associate Membership was to be open to any individual interested in the dental materials field, whether he was connected with a dental school, a government, a manufacturer, or was an individual dental practitioner.

From this start 25 years ago, The Group has progressed from meetings with 20 to 30 in attendance to listen to 4 or 5 papers until in recent years (1963) the total membership has reached 310 and 40 to 50 papers are presented annually in six program periods.

The meeting held in 1963 celebrated the 25th anniversary of the The Group. An unprecedented and special two hour block of time was set aside for the event. John Shell, one of the original 20 and one of the most talented individuals in the group, was asked to run the program. He was the Master of Ceremony, the main speaker (introducing over half of the original 20 who were in attendance), the presenter of awards and the recipient of an award. To keep things straight and his audience in tune, he used four different colored handkerchiefs; these were alternately placed in his breast pocket as he changed roles. His performance and comments to individuals were priceless and extremely humorous, especially his introduction of himself. Those in attendance will forever remember the event and the extremely talented and personal John Shell.

One of the major projects of the group has been the work done by its Specification Committee, which as a unit has been a consultant to the American Dental Association Research Fellowship in the development of Specifications for Dental Materials.

Starting in 1948, papers presented before the Group have been microfilmed and made available to anyone interested prior to the publication of the papers.

The providing of recognition, and through this encouragement, of worthy research in our field came in 1955 when the group established the Souder Award. The award honors the memory of Dr. Wilmer Souder and his outstanding scientific accomplishments and leadership in the field of dental materials research. Wilmer Souder was the Chief, Dental Research Section, National Bureau of Standards, from its establishment in 1919 through 1945. An excellent article on this award and the man was written by George Paffenbarger and Woody Rupp (A History of the IADR, Wilmer Souder Award in Dental Materials, with a short biography of Wilmer Souder -- Dental Materials 2: 49, 1986). Further recognition of the recipient of this award was begun in 1979 when the group began arranging a festive evening with gourmet dinner at the annual meeting.

Through the years the group has continued to grow and by the time of the 1988 meeting our membership had reached 785. At that meeting 397 papers were presented in 35 sessions (18 oral and 17 poster; poster sessions having been introduced in 1977 as a means of coping with the large increase in persons interested in presenting papers). As a further means of increasing the number of papers presented, the oral sessions have been further divided into separate subject areas. Diverse subjects have then been presented simultaneously; sometimes three at a time. The 1988 meeting also saw the DMG co-sponsoring a symposium with the Cariology Group on Fluoride Release and Anti-Caries Effects of Restorative Materials.

In 1975 the IADR held its first meeting outside North America in London. This tradition has continued every third year since. With internationalization the association established divisions. Following the formation of these divisions, the groups (by now there were 19 within the parent organization) split into chapters. By 1988 there were Dental Materials Group Chapters in the American, Australian-New Zealand, Canadian, Japanese, Scandinavian, and South African Associations for Dental Research. These chapters then began to elect their own officers (see Appendix IV for a listing of the 1988-89 presidents).

From a rather humble beginning of 20 men with a treasury of $20.00, the DMG has grown to a truly international institution and enters its second 50 years poised to expand its contributions to the science and practice of dentistry.

Edited by Jack Mitchem
March 1989

DMG Involvement in the Specification Program

(Written by John Stanford for "DENTAL MATERIALS GROUP -- The First Fifty Years")
The direct involvement of the DMG in the specification program began in 1953 when the American Dental Association desired to have participation at the formulation stage of a specification rather than just during a review period following its drafting. Prior to this time the program was organized and directed by the Dental Division of the Bureau of Standards in cooperation with the American Dental Association. The ADA approached the DMG and asked the group if they would consider forming a Specification Committee. The group agreed and a very workable arrangement developed between the two organizations. George Paffenbarger (then with the ADA group at the Bureau of Standards) became the first Secretary. He held this position until 1964 when John Stanford (Secretary of the ADA's Council on Dental Materials) assumed the duties.

In 1969, in view of the increasing program of international standards development in dentistry through the ISO/TC106, Dentistry, a conference was held at the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to form a U.S. recognized standards setting body for dentistry under the auspices of ANSI. This transition has led to the program that exists today under the Accredited Standards Committee MD156, Dental Materials, Instruments, and Equipment, chaired by Harold Stanley and sponsored by the ADA which provides the Secretariat and Secretary, Sharon Stanford.

The efforts expended within the DMG have contributed a great deal to the success of the present program of U.S. and international specification development.

Copyright DMG-IADR. All rights reserved.