Doris Bartuska papers
Held at: Drexel University: College of Medicine Legacy Center [Contact Us]
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Drexel University: College of Medicine Legacy Center. 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
Doris Sophie (Gorka) Bartuska was born in Nanticoke, Pennsylvania, on April 18, 1929 into a Catholic family in a Polish community. Her parents were Edward and Sophie (Wombal) Gorka. As a child, she studied piano, organ, and coloratura voice. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in biology from Bucknell Junior College (now Wilkes University) in 1949. At Bucknell College, Bartuska was encouraged to pursue a medical career by Dr. Charles Reif, although it was not a common career choice for women at the time. She joined the pre-med club and visited hospitals and medical schools.
After her graduation from Bucknell College, she married Anthony Bartuska, a captain in the United States Navy, in 1951. The couple moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she attended Woman’s Medical College and earned her M.D College in 1954. Dr. Bartuska gave birth to the first of six daughters between her third and fourth year at Woman’s Medical College. At Woman’s Medical College, she completed her internship, a fellowship, and her residency, and afterward held a traineeship in Endocrinology at Jefferson Medical College. At a time when it was uncommon for women to hold full-time jobs outside the home, Dr. Bartuska balanced her family and her medical career.
In 1958, she returned to Woman’s Medical College to serve as Assistant Dean and Associate in Medicine (Endocrinology) until 1966. For the next two years, Bartuska continued her post-graduate training as a National Institute of Health Fellow in Molecular Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Bartuska continued her work at Woman’s Medical College as Assistant Professor of Medicine and Assistant Professor of Pathology from 1996 to 1971. She acted as consultant in endocrinology in 1970 for the Veterans Administration Hospital in Philadelphia.
Dr. Bartuska was one of the first physicians certified in endocrinology when that specialty’s boards were originated in 1972. In 1973, she began serving as Director for the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the (formerly Woman’s) Medical College of Pennsylvania, and served as the Associate Dean for Curriculum from 1974 to 1976. She accepted the position Professor of Medicine at the Medical College of Pennsylvania in 1977 and held this position as well as the directorship until 1995. Dr. Bartuska also spent three years as a consultant in endocrinology at the Philadelphia Geriatric Center, from 1982 to 1985. She became Emeritus Professor of Medicine, Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism at Drexel College of Medicine (formerly the Medical College of Pennsylvania) following her retirement in 1996. She remained a consultant in endocrine and rare metabolic diseases as well as the genetic endocrinopathies, aging, osteoporosis, and thyroid diseases.
Dr. Bartuska was active in many professional organizations and served in formal roles in them, including on the Board of Directors for the Thyroid Society of Philadelphia (1982-1985), President of the Philadelphia Medical Society (1989), President Elect (1986) and President (1987) of the American Medical Women’s Association, and on the Board of Directors for the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (1992).
Among other awards and honors, Dr. Bartuska received the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching (1974), the Outstanding Educator of America (1975), the Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania medal (1988), an honorary Doctor of Science from Wilkes University (1997), and the Strittmatter Award from the Philadelphia County Medical Society (2002). She was inducted into the American Medical Women’s Association International Women in Medicine Hall of Fame in 2003. In 2008, she was awarded the Pennsylvania Medical Society’s Distinguished Service.
Dr. Bartuska was honored with a portrait, painted by her brother Paul Gorka, by Drexel College of Medicine in 2008. She was involved with the Institute for Women’s Health and Leadership at the College, appearing as a panelist for “Conversations about Women’s Health” and serving on the 20th Anniversary committee, among other roles. Dr. Bartuska passed on August 4, 2013 of complications from lymphoma at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.
This collection contains materials relating to the career and personal life of Dr. Doris Bartuska. They span from 1941 to 2010, although the bulk of the records cover the years 1970 to 2000. This collection is organized into seven series.
Series I: Organizations and institutions includes correspondence, event programs, and committee activity for professional organizations in which Dr. Bartuska was involved. Dr. Bartuska’s roles serving in numerous positions, including President, in the American Medical Women’s Association, the Pennsylvania Medical Society, are represented by correspondence and event planning information. The series contains records of the Philadelphia County Medical Society’s Strittmatter Award committee as well as the records of its Pfahler Foundation. Dr. Bartuska’s long-term employment Drexel College of Medicine is recorded in correspondence, congratulations on awards, and press releases.
Series II: Personal papers houses much personal correspondence, including holiday, birthday, and graduation cards from family and colleagues. Other correspondence includes communication regarding her career and her publications. Of special interest in this series are Dr. Bartuska’s notebooks from her classes and residency at Woman’s Medical College.
Series III: Clippings contains newspaper and magazine clippings related to Dr. Bartuska’s career and reprints of some of her published works. One of the more interesting clippings is an article from a 1958 Ladies’ Home Journal, which uses Dr. Bartuska as an example of a woman who can balance a career with family responsibilities.
Series IV: Hartwig Kuhlenbeck includes material related to Dr. Hartwig Kuhlenbeck, Professor of Anatomy at Woman’s Medical College, and mentor and close friend to Dr. Bartuska. Dr. Bartuska was the executor of Dr. Kuhlenbeck’s estate, and this series holds his estate papers and wills, as well as copies of correspondence from his colleagues, and photo albums of his travels. Much of this material is replicated in the collection DUCOM.323: Hartwig Kuhlenbeck papers.
Series V: Awards and certificates holds some (but not all) awards with which Dr. Bartuska was honored, including the 1975 Outstanding Educator of the Year, Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania, and American Medical Women’s Association service awards. Included are also certificates from Dr. Bartuska’s childhood, when she was a piano student.
Series VI: Photographs represents Dr. Bartuska’s involvement in medical society and College social function and illustrates her family life as well, including holiday and vacation photos. Additionally, the series includes teaching slides, which are undated.
Series VII: Objects consists of medical instruments, including syringes and a reflex hammer; uniform skirts, jackets, and scrub pants; and a commencement hood; among other items.
This collection consists of eight separate accessions, which were donated by Dr. Bartuska over a period of twenty-six years. The last accession was received in late 2013, donated after Dr. Bartuksa’s death by her daughter. After surveying the accessions, it was clear that they contained much of the same type of material, differing only in date. The decision was made to process all accessions as one large collection in order to make it more comprehensible and easy to use by researchers and staff.
- Drexel University: College of Medicine Legacy Center
- Finding Aid Author
- Finding aid prepared by Chrissie Perella