BBC DOCUMENTARY PRES. Timothy Leary: The Man Who Turned On America 3 OF 3
Timothy Leary And Richard Alpert
Two men who helped spread the epidemic and widen the cultural gap were Drs. Timothy Leary and Richard Alpert, instructors at Harvard University's center for Research in Human Personality.
During the summer of 1960, Leary had tried the Mexican psilocybin mushroom -- and liked what he found. He and Alpert began experimental work with LSD and synthetic psilocybin -- which, by the way, was first synthesized by Sandoz's Dr. Hofmann, some 15 years after his psychedelic bicycle ride.
In the fall of 1960, Leary and Alpert purchased some psilocybin from Sandoz for an experiment they planned with prisoners at the Massachusetts Correctional Institute in nearby Concord. Initial results were promising: Prisoners who had taken a psilocybin trip prior to release from Concord were found less likely to be returned for parole violation than those who had not had an Alpert/Leary trip (Brecher, 1972).
Dr's. Leary and Alpert continued to take recreational/experimental acid trips themselves. Being teachers by profession and generous men by nature, they spread the word of LSD to anyone who would listen: There was a revolution about to start. The mind would at last be freed from the bondage of proletarian concerns. 'You are never the same after you've had that one flash glimpse down the cellular time tunnel,' [Leary] said. 'Turn on' (Smith, 1975).