Held at: Historical Medical Library of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia [Contact Us]
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Historical Medical Library of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
The Francis Clark Wood Institute for the History of Medicine was established in 1976 to promote to the scholarly community the rich historical resources of the College's historical library and the Mütter Museum. The Institute sponsors conferences, occasional seminars, and short-term travel grants to researchers who require the resources of the museum and library. According to the History of Science Society, “the Wood Institute is the historical programming arm of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia and serves to promote use of the collections of the College Library and the Mutter Museum,” (History of Science Society). One of the many programs of the Francis Clark Wood Institute for the History of Medicine includes the F.C. Wood Institute Short Term Fellowships which offer travel grants to “bona fide researchers who wish to study any component of the College’s collections, ” (America Association for the History of Medicine). While recipients of the grant may work within the library, other options include texts, specimens, images, and artifacts. Other programs include seminars, lectures, and conferences.
Today, “the Wood Institute for the History of Medicine embraces all collections at the College and fosters a scholarly and public dialogue on medical history,” (Philadelphia Area Center for the History of Science).
Bibliography: American Association for the History of Medicine (accessed February 1, 2010). http://www.histmed.org/fellowships.htm
College of Physicians of Philadelphia (accessed February 1, 2010). http://www.collphyphil.org/library_wood_institute.htm
History of Science Society (accessed February 1, 2010). http://www.hssonline.org/guide/institution_detail.lasso?-Search=Action&-Table=Institutions%20web&-Database=hssguides&-KeyValue=76
Philadelphia Area Center for the History of Science (accessed February 1, 2010). http://www.pachs.net/members/archive/college_of_physicians_of_philadelphia/
This collection documents the operation and programs of the Francis Clark Wood Institute for the History of Medicine from 1968 to 2005, providing an in-depth view into the study of the history of medicine for more than three decades. The collection includes founding documents and records of the early history of the Institute, administrative records, budget and funding records, information regarding the Wood Fellowships and the Scholars-in Residence programs, information regarding events held by the Institute and information regarding Transactions and Studies, the publication of the Francis Clark Wood Institute.
This collection is arranged in six series. For more information on the contents of the collection, please see scope notes at the series levels.
This collection is minimally processed to the folder level.
- Historical Medical Library of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
- Access Restrictions
This collection is open for research, however, some materials are restricted. Please contact the College of Physicians Historical Medical Library for more information.
- Use Restrictions
Copyright restrictions may apply. Please contact the Archives with requests for copying and for authorization to publish, quote or reproduce the material.
This series dates from 1968 to 1985 and contains documents relating to the founding and early history of the Francis Clark Wood Institute for the History of Medicine. Included are proposals, plans, and reports, information regarding a symposium proposing an Institute promoting the history of medicine, drafts and charters for the Francis Clark Wood Institute. The progress and success of the Institute was documented via information regarding the development of the Institute as well as executive director John M. O'Donnell's report on the structure and function of the Institute in 1992. This series is arranged chronologically.
The "Administrative records" series documents the operation and governance of the Francis Clark Wood Institute. The series is arranged in 12 subseries.
The "Advisory Committee records" consist of files regarding the members of the advisory board. These files generally contain correspondence and are arranged alphabetically by member name. Also included are proposals, reports, and minutes from meetings dating from 1983 to 1986, all of which are arranged in chronological order.
The "Annual reports" span the years 1980 to 1994, however the report from 1982 is not included. This section is arranged in chronological order.
The Krumbhaar Medical History Essay from 2003 to 2006 is documented in "Award - Krumbhaar Medical History Essay." Edward Bell Krumbhaar, M.D. (1882-1966) was a distinguished pathologist and cardiac physiologist, as well as one of Philadelphia’s leading historians of medicine. A founder of both the Section on Medical History of the College of Physicians and the American Association of the History of Medicine (AAHM), Dr. Krumbhaar also served as President of the College and of the AAHM. In February 1957, the Section on Medical History of the College of Physicians awarded the first Krumbhaar Award, which was available to students in a medical or osteopathic school in eastern Pennsylvania or New Jersey or students with advanced degrees in history, other humanities, sociology, or anthropology will be judged in a separate pool. These files are arranged in chronological order.
"Building, office, and technical equipment records" includes building assessment records, information regarding computerization, disaster planning, system needs analyses, and information regarding expansion. These materials range in date from 1986 to 2004 and are arranged in alphabetical order.
Records regarding "Cooperative planning," include minutes, plans, goals, and remarks. These files date from 1987 to 1990 and are arranged in chronological order.
Extensive correspondence is included in this series, however, it is important to note that many other series and subseries may also contain correspondence. "Correspondence with individuals" is arranged in two sections: folders containing letters of a sender or recipient who wrote only once; and folders containing correspondents who wrote numerous letters. In both cases, the letters are arranged alphabetically by correspondent's name. Several prominent writers include Alma Dea Morani and Samuel X Radbill. "Correspondence with organizations" includes correspondence with organizations with which the Francis Clark Wood Institute dealt regularly. A few organizations include Albert Einstein Medical Center, the American Medical Association, the Journal of American History, Lankenau Hospital, the Strong Museum and Thomas Jefferson University.
The "Library" records document the library's involvement with the Francis Clark Wood Institute and include information regarding proposed reduction of size of collection, reports, grants, conference planning, and library reconfiguration. These records date from 1983 to 1989 and are arranged chronologically.
"Staff" files consist largely of job descriptions, information regarding applicants, and information regarding staff members from 1987 to 2005. Due to the personal nature of these files, this subseries is restricted. Please ask Archives staff if you wish to review the material.
Information regarding the Wood Institute's publishing program includes correspondence, a bibliography of writings on Dr. Benjamin Rush, and a manuscript for History of Wood Engraving in 19th Century American Medical Illustration, which appeared in Canadian Bulletin of Medical History in 1998. The files in this series are arranged chronologically.
"Miscellaneous administrative records" include records that relate to Francis Clark Wood Institute, but are frequently of a broader nature. These files, arranged alphabetically, include information regarding accommodations for researchers, catering of events, Health Science Libraries Consortium, College Night Lectures, College of Physicians of Philadelphia administration, and Womens' Committee of the College of Physicians. General correspondence discusses the history of maritime medicine, applicants for the Wood Fellowship, research regarding conferences, thank you letters, etc. Records date from 1980 to 1998.
"Historical Collections information" includes materials relating to the sources used by Wood Fellows and Scholars-in-Residence. In this subseries are annual reports, information regarding location of collections, collection development policies, procedure manuals, staff records, information regarding donations, and a compilation of records regarding collections relating to radiology.
Due to the personal nature of employee files, the folders in Boxes 14 and 15 are restricted. Please ask Archives staff for permission to view these records.
The material in this folder is confidential and therefore restricted. Please ask staff in order to view the material.
The bulk of the "Budget and Funding" series is organized by fiscal year and dates from 1985 to 1997. For each fiscal year, there is generally information regarding the operating budget, expenditures, income, monthly statements from the Philadelphia National Bank, and accounts. There is also information regarding "Tax status, donations, grants, and fundraising" which include records dating from 1964 to 1999. Included in this subseries are files on specific grants for specific projects such as processing of the pamphlet collection, computerization and cataloging projects for the Mutter Museum, and the processing and cataloging of the Elm Hill Private Institute collection. Finally, the "Rockefeller Foundation" records include material dating from 1985 to 1990 and consisting of correspondence, grants, information regarding the Rockefeller Fellowship, reports, funding requests and program announcements. This material is arranged chronologically.
The "Wood Fellowships/Scholars-in-Residence" contains files of a sensitive and personal nature, therefore, it is restricted. Seek permission from Archives staff to view these records.
The series is arranged into two subseries: "Wood Fellowships" and "Scholars-in Residence." Included in this series are mailing lists, applicant files, correspondence, selection committee minutes, and Fellows' reports. The materials date 1983 to 2008 and are arranged chronologically. Contents of the applicant files is frequently sparse, but sometimes the files include an application letter, resume, letters of recommendation, lists of resources needed, and brief writing sample on the proposed topic for research. Some topics include: social development of the mental hospital, vivisection, development of the psyche in the middle ages, older women and their doctors at the turn of the century, patent medicine from 1924 to 1932, relationships between music and medicine, EEG, Philadelphia physicians and hospitals, vaccination, cancer and culture in America.
The "Events" series documents 12 events and/or projects in relative detail. Events or projects which are particularly well documented include: "A Melancholy Scene of Devastation": The Public Response to the 1793 Philadelphia Yellow Fever Epidemic, 1993; Disease and Society in the Developing World: Exploring New Perspectives, An International Conference, 1992; Ethics Committee Project, 1986 to 1990; Hippocrates and Modern Medicine, 1996; History of Medicine Seminars, 1983 to 1997; History of Scientific Medicine in Paris, 1790-1850: A Reinterpretation, 1992; Internal Medicine Conference and Publication, "Grand Rounds: One Hundred Years of Internal Medicine," 1988; Conference on Health and Medicine in the Era of Lewis and Clark, 2004; Looking Forward: Women in American Medicine, 1888-1988; 'Say Ahh!:' Examining America's Health, 1995 to 1996; Seeking Common Ground: Law, Medicine, and Patient Care in the 1990s, 1991; and the Social History of Disease, 1988. Almost all of these events are documented via planning documents, budgets, correspondence, speaker information, attendees lists, program descriptions, conference papers, and event ephemera. On several occasions, information regarding sponsors of the event is included.
The History of Medicine Seminar records also contain files on specific speakers, however, the information is frequently inconsistent in depth. Some files contain notes, letters of acceptance, and background writings, while others contain nothing more than a phone message or a list of attendees. The lectures do not appear to exist in these folders.
Miscellaneous events include events that were less well documented, but still include valuable information.
The files in this series will be of interest to researchers studying any of the topics addressed in the events as well as researcher interested in history of medicine conferences and symposia, generally.
Contains a letter written by a conference attendee regarding her legal claims against physicians over life endangerment.
Certain documents in this file contain information that may be sensitive. Request permission from staff to view these records.
This project was a collaboration between the Strong Museum of Rochester, NY, The Health Museum of Cleveland, OH, and the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, PA.
The series Transactions and Studies documents this publication from 1972 to 2004. This series is organized chronologically. Materials include memorandum, printing information, financial and budget information, correspondence, rights and permissions, task force records, and advertisements. This series also contains manuscripts submitted for the publication. It is unknown if the manuscripts included in this collection were accepted or rejected, but the topics covered are fascinating. Some examples include: "The Final Diagnosis of President Cleveland's Lesion," "Hospitalizing the Poor: The Philadelphia Almshouse and Hospital," "Thomas Cadwalader, MD and the Practice of Medicine in Colonial America," and "If you can't be sick, don't kick: The Spanish Influenza Epidemic at Bryn Mawr College." The manuscripts in this collection are arranged alphabetically by the author's name.
File contains a manuscript of Chapter 2 from Farr's dissertation, "Hospitalizing the Poor: The Philadelphia Almshouse and Hospital. Also contains a copy of "Philadelphia General Hospital: Its Birth and End" by Tadashi Takeuchi. The latter contains a photograph of a curator from The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, who is showing a photograph of William Osler performing an autopsy, taken during Takeuchi's visit to the College in 1983.
File contains copy of the obituary for Francis Heed Adler written by Frayer for Archives of Ophthalmology.
Contains photographs and correspondence relating to a manuscript entitled "Wax Models in Dermatology."