Robert T. Pickett, 74, a retired chemical engineer who had been an area resident since 1934, died Saturday at Holy Cross Hospital in Silver Spring. He had emphysema.

Mr. Pickett was a native of Jonesboro, Ark., and a 1930 graduate of Louisana State University where he earned a bachelor's degree in engineering, was a member of the swim team, and was active in volunteer work.

He moved to New York City in 1930 and worked as a chemical engineer for the old Standard Oil Company of New Jersey, then transferred to Washington in 1934.

He then spent 20 years as manager of the old Washington Garage Company, a parking lot concern, before becoming a control chemist with the McCormick Paint Company in Rockville in 1960. He retired in 1978.

Mr. Pickett was a member of Grace Episcopal Church in Silver Spring and had taught Sunday School classes there.

He had been a resident of Silver Spring for the past 40 years.

Survivors include his wife, Katherine, of Silver Spring; two sons, Robert T. Jr., of Washington, and James M., of Baltimore; a daughter, Martha E. Pickett of Silver Spring; two sisters, Martha James of Memphis, Tenn., and Josephine Clipfel of Benton, Mo.