Summary
Collection ID:
Record Unit 244
Creators:
National Museum of History and Technology. Division of Medical Sciences
Dates:
circa 1890-1977
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
21.13 cu. ft. (42 document boxes) (1 oversize folder)
Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives

Descriptive Entry
Descriptive Entry
These records document the activities of the Division of Medical Sciences and its predecessors, chiefly for the years 1917-1975. Included are correspondence, memoranda, annual reports, and administrative files concerning the Division's collections, exhibits, and research into the history of medicine and pharmacy. Of special interest is an extensive file of James A. Tobey of the National Health Council, relating to efforts to organize an exhibit on advancements in public health that was placed in the Smithsonian, 1922-1924. Some material reflecting the professional activities of Sami K. Hamarneh and Audrey B. Davis is also included.

Historical Note
Historical Note
The Smithsonian's interest in the medical sciences dates back to the Toner Lecture series that was established by Joseph M. Toner in 1872. The Secretary of the Institution served on the board of trustees for the fund that supported the series, and the Smithsonian published the lectures, which took place between 1873 and 1890, in its Miscellaneous Collections.
The Smithsonian's collection documenting the history of the medical sciences began with the transfer of a large collection of materia medica from exhibitors at the 1876 Centennial Exposition. This collection was put under the care of the Section of Materia Medica, Department of Arts and Industries, in the United States National Museum in 1881. From 1881 to 1900, the United States Navy detailed a Navy surgeon to act as Honorary Curator of the section. These surgeons included James M. Flint, 1881-1884, 1887-1891, and 1895-1900; Henry G. Beyer, 1884-1887; John C. Boyd, 1891-1892; William S. Dixon, 1892-1893; C. H. White, 1893; C. U. Gravatt, 1893-1894; R. A. Marmion, 1894; and David McMurtrie, 1894-1895.
Following his retirement from the Navy in 1900, Flint volunteered to remain as Honorary Curator and held that position until 1912. In an 1897 reorganization of the United States National Museum, the section became the Division of Medicine, Department of Anthropology. Flint retired from the Division in 1912, and for the next five years it was supervised by Frederick L. Lewton, Curator of the Division of Textiles.
The Division of Medicine again had its own curator in 1917 when Joseph Donner was appointed Assistant Curator. He was succeeded in 1918 by Charles Whitebread, who served as Assistant Curator, 1918-1939, and Associate Curator, 1939-1948. Curators since 1948 have included George S. Thomas, Associate Curator, 1948-1952; George B. Griffenhagen, Associate Curator, 1952-1956, and Curator, 1956-1959; John B. Blake, Associate Curator, 1957-1959, and Curator, 1959-1961; Sami K. Hamarneh, Associate Curator, 1959-1963, and Curator, 1963-1972; and Audrey B. Davis, Assistant Curator, 1968-1970, and Associate Curator, 1970-1977. In 1939, the name of the Division was changed to the Division of Medicine and Public Health, Department of Engineering and Industries. With the establishment of the Museum of History and Technology in 1957, the Division became the Division of Medical Sciences, Department of Science and Technology.

Notes
SI Records

Using the Collection
Prefered Citation
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 244, National Museum of History and Technology. Division of Medical Sciences, Records

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Hamarneh, Sami Khalaf, 1925- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Davis, Audrey B. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Jackson, Everett A. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Tobey, James A. (James Alner), 1894- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Cohn, Victor, 1919-2000 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Kenny, Elizabeth, 1886-1952 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Toner, Joseph M. (Joseph Meredith), 1825-1896 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Flint, James M. (James Milton), 1838-1919 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Beyer, Henry G. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Boyd, John C. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Dixon, William S. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
White, C. H. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Gravatt, C. U. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Marmion, R. A. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
McMurtrie, Daniel Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Hough, Walter, 1859-1935 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lewton, Frederick L. (Frederick Lewis), 1874-1959 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Donner, Joseph Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Whitebread, Charles Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Thomas, George S. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Griffenhagen, George B. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Blake, John B. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
National Museum of History and Technology (U.S.). Hall of Rehabilitative Medicine Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
National Health Council (U.S.) Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Washington Post Company Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Section of Materia Medica Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Division of Medicine Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Department of Anthropology Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States. Navy Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Division of Ethnology Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Division of Textiles Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Division of Medicine and Public Health Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States National Museum. Dept. of Engineering and Industries Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
National Museum of History and Technology (U.S.). Dept. of Science and Technology Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Medical museums Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Medicine Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Manuscripts Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Black-and-white photographs Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Floor plans Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Smithsonian Institution Archives
Washington, D.C.
Contact us at osiaref@si.edu