Posts tagged: Fleischner Society

Collection Highlight: Clusters of Manuscripts in Radiology, Hematology, Surgery, and More

Francis D. Moore, Joseph Murray, and George Thorn. Date unknown.

One of the Center’s acquisitions goals is to develop collections that are uniquely deep and rich in connections, providing a view into biomedical and public health disciplines, research areas, communities, and practices via published and unpublished sources– personal papers, professional association records, institutional archives, ephemera, images, and objects. Several of these clusters are well-known; the Historical Collection in Radiology, for example, encompasses rare books extending to the earliest development of radiology, manufacturers catalogs, images, scientific apparatus, and the records of the Fleischner Society and American and New England Roentgen Ray Societies, as well as manuscript collections including those of Felix Fleischner, Morris Simon, Merrill Sosman, Charles L. Dunham and Lauriston Taylor. The Center continues to build on this strong foundation and opened many of these manuscript collections over the past two years (see recent blog posts). More collections will be opened next year.

Another cluster of collections recently opened by the Center are those in hematology (the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases of the blood and bone marrow as well as of the immunologic, blood clotting, and vascular systems). The Harvard medical community was the site of some major advances in hematology, including William Parry Murphy’s research concerning various hematological diseases, notably pernicious anemia, leukemia, and diabetes mellitus. With George Richards Minot (1885-1950) and George Hoyt Whipple (1878-1976), he is credited with developing a treatment for pernicious anemia using a diet of uncooked liver, for which all three were awarded the 1934 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine. Murphy later worked throughout his career to refine the liver extract developed by Edwin Joseph Cohn (1892-1953) and George Richards Minot for the treatment of pernicious anemia. In 1941, Cohn, working with T.L. McMeekin and John L. Oncley (1810-2004), developed a method of fractionating blood plasma proteins to extend the storage life of blood and use blood proteins more efficiently. More recently, William Dameshek is credited with proposing a technique for bone marrow extraction using a needle, collaborating in the first known multi-institutional chemotherapy trial, and developing treatments for various autoimmune diseases. With Yuet Wai Kan, David G. Nathan introduced the first prenatal diagnostic test for thalassemia and sickle cell anemia.  He is also known for introducing deferoxamine as an effective treatment of iron overload and hydroxyurea as a treatment for sickle cell anemia symptoms. Collections in boldface were recently opened; more collections are on the way (see blog posts for details).

Surgery is another area in which we are assiduously acquiring and striving to open collections.  Earlier this year, Joseph Murray‘s papers were opened to research, joining the collections of plastic surgery pioneer Varaztad Kazanjian, Edward Churchill, Elliot Cutler, Louis T. Wright, the first black appointed to the staff of a New York hospital, Maurice Howe Richardson and his son, Edward Pierson RichardsonWilliam Bovie, American Association of Plastic Surgeons, the New England Vascular Surgery Society, and many others.  We are currently processing the Judah Folkman and Dwight Harken collections, but are still seeking resources to prepare for research access the extensive personal and professional papers of Francis D. Moore. Of greatest concern are the number of living ‘greats’ whose papers have yet to be acquired.

Building the powerful research collections that fuel ground-breaking research demands the active support of the whole community– everyone from physicians, health professionals, scientists, administrators, lab managers, researchers, and all those who are interested in the advancement of knowledge.  In addition to surgery, we are currently collecting in genetics, immunology and infectious diseases, public health, and other fields. We rely on you to alert us to important collections and objects in your field that might be of interest, particularly where those materials might be at risk.

Want to know more about the Center’s holdings in your discipline? Go to the Harvard Library simple search portal, enter your keyword, and click on “Go.” Your findings will be delivered on a Hollis results page; there are many options to refine (narrow) results, including location (select ‘Countway’) and format (choose ‘Archives/Manuscripts’). For assistance, contact the Center’s public services librarians at 617-432-2170 or email to chm@hms.harvard.edu.

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March 1: Beneath the Surface: The Development and Cultural Impact of Radiology

By , February 8, 2012

Join us for an exploration of the history of radiology, including the development of the X-ray, the pioneering “radiology martyrs,” and radiology’s pervasive influence on visual culture.

Beneath the Surface:
The Development and Cultural Impact of Radiology
March 1, 5:00-7:00 pm
Reception to follow
Display of objects from newly opened radiology collections
All are welcome.
RSVP:
contactchom@hms.harvard.edu

Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine
10 Shattuck Street
Boston, MA
Directions

Featuring:

Scott H. Podolsky
Assistant Professor, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Director, Center for the History of Medicine

Ronald Eisenberg
Associate Professor, Department of Radiology
Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital and Harvard Medical School
“Early Days of Radiology”

Daniel Goldberg
Assistant Professor, Department of Bioethics & Interdisciplinary Studies
Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University
“Amputation, Sacrifice and Death: X-Rays, Walter James Dodd, and the Power of Remotely Anatomizing the Living Body in Fin-de-Siècle America”

Bettyann Kevles
Senior Lecturer, History of Science and Medicine, History Department
Yale University
“Medical imaging and the Visual Arts in the 20th Century”

Download the flyer here: RadiologyFinal

This event celebrates the opening of important Center collections in the history of radiology. These include the personal and professional records of Lauriston Taylor, Felix Fleischner, and Morris Simon, and the organizational archives of the Fleischner Society. Processing of these collections was made possible with the support of the Lloyd E. Hawes Fund for Radiology. Additional collections, including the records of Merrill Sosman, will be processed with the Hawes Fund support later in 2012. Online finding aids for these collections are posted as they become available on the website of the Center for the History of Medicine. Additional information about collection openings is reported on the Center’s blog.

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Fleischner Society Records Open to Research

By , February 7, 2012

As a part of its efforts to provide access to important radiology collections, the Center is happy to announce that the archives of the Fleischner Society have been processed and are available to researchers. The collection consists of the society’s administrative and membership records, as well as records related to its publishing activities. The finding aid for the collection can be accessed here.

The Fleischner Society was founded in 1969 and named for the radiologist Felix Fleischner (1893-1969). The mission of the society is to further research in fields related to chest radiology and human chest diseases. The society, whose membership is set by its by-laws at about 60, sponsors annual meetings and symposia, as well as the Fleischner Lecture and the Memorial Fellowship Award. Founding members include Robert G. Fraser (1921-2002, the Society’s first President), Norman Blank (1925-1988), Benjamin Felson (1913-1988), Richard Greenspan (1925-2004), Eric N. C. Milne (1929-), Leo Rigler (1896-1979), George Simon (1902-1977), and Morris Simon (1926-2005) (see blog post about the Simon collection here).

The collection was processed by Amber LaFountain, an intern in the Archives Management Program at the Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science. Amber was the Center’s first intern from Simmons’ new Archives Field Experience class, which provides interns with a 130 hour internship instead of the previous 60 hour assignment.

For information regarding access to the collection, please contact the Public Services staff.

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Morris Simon Papers Open to Research

By , February 6, 2012

From the Harvard Medical Library in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine.

The Center for the History of Medicine is pleased to announce the papers of Morris Simon, M.D., have been processed and are now open to researchers. Simon (1926-2005; M.B., B.Ch., 1948, Witwatersrand University and Medical School) was Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, from 1972 to 1997 and Radiologist-in-Chief at Beth Israel Hospital (now Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center), Boston, from 1963 to 1970. Simon’s research focused on chest radiology, including pulmonary blood circulation and the use of thermal shape-memory alloys for devices such as stents and vena cava filters, as well as computerized language information processing for medical reporting.

The bulk of the papers contain lecture and article drafts, drawings, professional correspondence, patent applications, and reports produced by Simon while developing several medical devices and patents, including the Simon Nitinol Filter and Stent, needle localiser, variable scale disc ruler, and rotary disc calculator. In addition to his clinical and research activities, Simon authored numerous articles and was an active member of many professional organizations. He was President of the New England Roentgen Ray Society from 1972 to 1973, founding member and President of the Fleischner Society in 1976, and a member of the American College of Radiology, the Radiological Society of North America, the American Medical Association, and the Massachusetts Medical Association. Simon was also a member of the Faculty of Radiology, England, who awarded him a F.F.R. in 1956.

To celebrate the opening of important Center collections in the history of radiology, including the papers of Morris Simon, the Center is hosting an event entitled “Beneath the Surface: The Development and Cultural Impact of Radiology” which will be held on Thursday, March 1, 2012. Additional information about the event can be found on the Center’s Exhibits and Events website and blog.

For more information about Morris Simon, the collection, and how to access the materials, please view the collection finding aid.

Processing of the Morris Simon papers was made possible by the Countway Library’s Lloyd E. Hawes Fund for Radiology.

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Felix Fleischner Papers Open to Research

By , January 28, 2012

The Center is pleased to announce that the papers of Felix Fleischner, M.D. have been processed and are now open to researchers. Fleischner (M.D., 1919, University of Vienna) was Clinical Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, and Radiologist-in-Chief, Emeritus, Beth Israel Hospital, Boston.

Fleischner’s papers are the product of his activities as a radiologist, educator, lecturer, and contributing member of national and international radiological societies. Fleischner’s research focused on pulmonary diseases, including atelectasis, bronchitis, bronchiectasis, emphysema, and tuberculosis, as well as diseases of the heart and colon. In addition to his clinical and administrative work, Fleischner authored numerous articles that appeared in The New England Journal of Medicine and Radiology, served as President of the New England Roentgen Ray Society, and was a member of the American Roentgen Ray Society and the Radiological Society of North America. In the late 1960s, Fleischner and a small group of radiologists began to organize a thoracic radiology society. When the society was formally created in December 1969, Fleischner’s colleagues named it the Fleischner Society, in memory of the radiologist.

To celebrate the opening of important Center collections in the history of radiology, including the papers of Felix Fleischner, the Center is hosting an event entitled “Beneath the Surface: The Development and Cultural Impact of Radiology” which will be held on Thursday, March 1, 2012. Additional information about the event can be found on the Center’s Exhibits and Events website and blog.

For more information about Felix Fleischner, the collection, and how to access the materials, please view the collection finding aid.

Processing of the Felix Fleischner papers was made possible by the Countway Library’s Lloyd E. Hawes Fund for Radiology.

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An Intern’s Experience at the Center for the History of Medicine

By , November 18, 2011

I’m Amber LaFountain, the latest intern from the Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science.  I’m in the Archives Management program, and making my way through my fourth semester.  Last Spring, the program introduced the Archives Field Experience class, a 130-hour internship course, and I’m lucky to be the Center for the History of Medicine’s first intern from that class!  The longer time commitment is letting me do more than just get my feet wet.  I’m gaining more processing experience, working on a larger collection, and getting more guidance than I could have with a shorter time allowance.

In September, I began processing the Fleischner Society Records.  The Society was founded in 1969 by eight radiologists interested in furthering research in fields related to chest radiology and human chest diseases, and today is comprised of over a hundred active and senior members from around the world.  It was named for Dr. Felix Fleischner, a recognized chest radiologist who died just prior to the Society’s first meeting.  Each year, the Society holds a symposium in which members meet to educate each other on new research into chest radiology and human chest diseases.

The records date from 1969 through 2002, and consist of administrative records, publications correspondence, and membership records.  The bulk of the collection reflects the Society’s annual symposia, but the records also reflect administrative activities, finances, membership selection, committee functions, and publication efforts.  While here, I’ve been working to arrange and describe the collection so that it can soon be accessible to researchers.  To top off the internship, I’ll create a finding aid for the collection, which I will then encode for online access.

I’m lucky to be gaining this experience here, where I can see how the theories and methods that I’ve learned in class play out in a large and well established institution.  It’s been a great experience so far, and I’m looking forward to seeing what the next few weeks have in store!

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Staff Finds: Lung Sections of Welsh Coal Miners

By , October 21, 2011

Lung section of a Welsh coal miner, H MS c57. From the Harvard Medical Library in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine.

While processing the papers of radiologist Felix Fleischner (1893-1969), Center staff discovered lung sections of Welsh coal miners mounted to paper and an accompanying letter from Dr. Jethro Gough of the Welsh National School of Medicine in Cardiff. Dr. Gough, along with I. E. Wentworth, is known for developing in the 1940s a method where lungs are sliced at the micron level and mounted for analysis. In his letter to Fleischner dated August 25, 1958, Gough described the lung sections of several coal miners he sent to the Boston radiologist. One coal miner is described as having, “simple pneumoconiosis with coal nodules and emphysema.” Fleischner previously used Gough’s lung sections in 1954 for an article he wrote for The New England Journal of Medicine entitled, “Linear X-Ray Shadows in Acquired Pulmonary Hemosiderosis and Congestion.” A sample of Gough’s 1958 lung sections can be seen below (click on the image to see a larger version). The lung sections were transferred to the Warren Anatomical Museum, the Center’s division that curates and cares for artifacts and anatomy collections.

Felix Fleischner was a Clinical Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School and the first full-time radiologist and Head of the Department at Beth Israel Hospital. Fleischner’s research areas included pulmonary embolism, bronchiectasis, and emphysema. In 1969, the Fleischner Society was created and named in his honor.

Processing of the Felix Fleischner papers is made possible by the Countway Library’s Lloyd E. Hawes Fund for Radiology.

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