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Thomas P. KUGELMAN Obituary


Thomas Peter Kugelman, a Hartford-area dermatologist in private practice for nearly five decades, died on August 18, 2013 at his home in Bloomfield. He was 78. Dr. Kugelman was an avid music lover and noted authority on 18th-century Connecticut furniture. Born in New York City on October 25, 1934 to the late Bernhard Kugelmann and Ingeborg Bielschowsky, Dr. Kugelman attended Fieldston School and graduated from Yale College, where he met his future wife, Alice Kirkpatrick. He received his medical training at the Yale School of Medicine and completed his internship and residency in dermatology at the University of Michigan. In 1964, he set up a dermatology practice at Hartford Hospital, retiring in 2011. Dr. Kugelman served on the medical staff of Hartford Hospital as Chief of Dermatology (1986-2001) and Chief of Staff (1991- 1993). A dedicated teacher, he supervised physicians and students at Hartford Hospital and Yale School of Medicine, where he was also Associate Clinical Professor. During the early 1970s, Dr. Kugelman and his wife began studying 18th-century Connecticut furniture. Over the next 40 years they assembled an important collection of Connecticut River Valley furniture. What began as a hobby grew into a serious scholarly undertaking. Along with Robert Lionetti, they applied the rigor of medical diagnostics to furniture examination, resulting in the publication of their 2005 book Connecticut Valley Furniture by Eliphalet Chapin and His Contemporaries 1750-1800. They curated the accompanying exhibition at the Connecticut Historical Society and the Concord (MA) Museum. His passion for Connecticut furniture and decorative arts prompted Dr. Kugelman's dedication to the Connecticut Historical Society, where he served as a trustee and chair of the Museum Collections Committee from 1980 until shortly before his death. Even as illness impaired his physical mobility during his last year, Dr. Kugelman continued to perform research for the Society. He enjoyed playing cello with the Connecticut String Orchestra, organizing several European concert tours and serving as president and librarian for many years. He also loved playing chamber music with friends and family. Dr. Kugelman was a long-term member of Asylum Hill Congregational Church in Hartford, where he served as deacon and moderator. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Alice Kugelman; a sister, Barbara Merrill of Saratoga, CA; three daughters, Lisa Kugelman and her husband Roy Wiseman of West Hartford, Karen and Robert Paruolo of Glastonbury, and Margaret and Andrew Hofer of Princeton, NJ; and eight grandchildren. The family extends its gratitude to Iris Gray for her loving care.
A celebration of his life will be held at Asylum Hill Congregational Church on Sunday, August 25, 2013 at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the Connecticut Historical Society, 1 Elizabeth Street, Hartford, CT 06105, Asylum Hill Congregational Church, 814 Asylum Ave., Hartford, CT 06105, or the ALS Association, 4 Oxford Rd, Milford, CT 06460.

Published in The Hartford Courant on Aug. 20, 2013
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