Sir Alexander Fleming: 1881 - 1955
Sir Alexander Fleming was born in Ayrshire on 6 August 1881, the son of a farmer. He moved to London at the age of 13 and later trained as a doctor. He qualified with distinction in 1906 and began research at St Mary's Hospital Medical School at the University of London under Sir Almroth Wright, a pioneer in vaccine therapy.
In 1928, while studying the influenza virus, Fleming noticed that mould had developed accidentally on a set of dishes being used to grow the staphylococci germ. The mould had created a bacteria-free circle around itself. Fleming experimented further and named the active substance penicillin. This discovery would change the world of medicine forever, and cement Fleming's place as one of the most famous scientists in the world. In 1944, Fleming was knighted by King George VI and also won the Nobel Prize a year later.
In 1909 at the age of 27, Fleming was initiated into Sancta Maria Lodge No. 2682 which met in London. Fleming was also a member of Misericordia Lodge No. 3286 which also meets in London.