Coming from outside the field but with healthy curiosity I have been struck by what may be regarded as a discrepancy between the impact on science at large of the mathematics developed in the field of statistics, and the relative lack of popular recognition of its most outstanding figures.
Here come to mind the ubiquitous use of t-tests and ANOVA in medicine, biology, and psychology for example. Certainly, a lot of life-altering decisions on treatment of individuals, as well as health policies, have been informed by results considered scientific and hence trustworthy due to their foundation on these mathematical tools passed along by figures such as RA Fisher (or William Gosset). Another prominent name who has changed our understanding of science, and practically issued an epistemology of empiricism in its own right, can be found in reverend Thomas Bayes.
Anecdotally, a Google search of
top mathematicians in history yields all sort of returns on the first page, one of them broad enough to be promising: "List of Important Mathematicians", without mention of RA Fisher, or Karl Pearson, John Tukey... Under "Famous Mathematicians" even CF Gauss is left out.
In trying to sort out a reason for this differential appreciation of historical figures in mathematics and science by the public at large, a suggestion was advanced in one of the comments that perhaps this was extensive to all applied mathematics, not just statistics, in contradistinction to pure mathematics.
This is a plausible explanation, and invites the reformulation of the initial question as: What has been the relation and mutual regard of pure and applied branches of mathematics throughout history?