Friday, December 22, 2006

Happy day!

People often think that all we have in the way of photographs are boring old shots of buildings or stuffy portraits of faculty dead and gone. Well, in the spirit of holiday fun, here's a shot from the boxes of photos recently donated by the folks at University News & Publications. Sure, there's an old building in it, but there's nothing stuffy about this delightful character!

Happy holidays!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Dietetics donation, or, minding our peas and carrots!

Our holdings in the history of dietetics was considerably strengthened today when Dorothy Hagen, outgoing director of the Dietetic Internship Program here at OHSU, stopped by to drop off a huge box of photographs, ephemera, and books on diet and nutrition.

Along with many, many pictures of students, faculty, and staff from the program, there are class lists, promotional pamphlets, and news clippings. Of the eleven books donated, only two duplicate holdings in the OHSU Library. Thanks to this donation, we now have the two updates to the 1972 The profession of dietetics: the report of the Study Commission on Dietetics, which were published in 1985 and 1994. These three volumes together will give researchers a strong basic understanding of the development of dietetics in America. We also received the 1951 text on Tropical nutrition and dietetics by Lucius Nicholls, and Dietetics for nurses by Fairfax T. Proudfit (what a fantastic name!).

As we mentioned in an earlier post, when Dorothy Hagen and Carolyn Ostergren together donated some materials related to the program, the Dietetic Internship at OHSU is the oldest on the West Coast. We are honored and delighted to be able to provide an even more comprehensive picture of its growth.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Anatomy (almost ) reanimated

The Oregonian Science section this morning is carrying an article on an exhibit currently on display in Seattle: "Bodies...The Exhibition." Exhibition, exhibitionist, this show seems to be designed to educate through a little shock and awe. (Sadly, the online version of the Oregonian doesn't carry any of the pictures printed in the morning edition, but you can get a taste of the show on the exhibit website.)

Anatomy is one of those subjects that we all learn in school, at least a little ("thigh bone connected to the..."). Students in biomedical fields learn much, much more, of course, and the majority of it is now done through virtual means. There's no substitute for working with a real body, however, and the Body Donation Program here at OHSU (also mentioned in the Oregonian's piece) supplies cadavers to institutions across the state.

If you're a little queasy about the thought of the "Bodies" show, or for that matter really, really excited about seeing it, you're not alone. Graphic representations of corpses always seem to produce strong reactions, negative or positive. In November 2004, after giving her OHSU History of Medicine Society lecture on Frankenstein, author Susan Lederer presented another topic for medical students in the history of medicine elective course. She spoke about the early twentieth-century trend in photography wherein medical students posed with their cadavers in elaborate scenes, often sporting with the bodies or dressing them in unlikely guises. Some contemporary observers were horrified while others found it all in good fun; today, I suspect that most viewers of these photos would divide along the same line.

We have a few such images here in our own Historical Image Collection. Only one (rather tame) of these has yet been added to the OHSU Digital Resources Library. Two other images, digitized for use in our Frankenstein exhibit in 2004, give a better sense of what you might see in Seattle should you choose to go: horse and rider and solar plexus. Bodies have been made into art since the 18th century, but I guess everything comes back around at some point. If you dig these Fragonard works, buy your "Bodies" ticket today!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Pictorial history

Today, just in time to be made available to a researcher working on the history of campus architecture, we received from OHSU News & Publications two document boxes filled with pictures of campus buildings and other architectural features. There are thirty-five folders, including prints, negatives, and slides, dating from the 1920s to the 1990s, of:

Basic Science Building
Baird Hall
Campus Services Building (which is the old TB Hospital)
Casey Eye Institute
Courtyard (also known as "Laster's Folly")
CROET addition
Dotter Institute
Emma Jones
Flame (when it used to be at the entrance to OHSU Hospital)
Gazebo (when it used to overlook the Willamette and Mt. Hood)
General Exteriors (labeled "with people" and "without people")
Hatfield Research Center
Mackenzie Hall
Outpatient Clinic
Parking, Employee (I'd like to be able to say "before it was a problem" but...)
Physicians' Pavilion
Research Building
Residence Hall (before it was "decommissioned" in 2003)
School of Dentistry
School of Nursing
Sports & Fitness Center
University Hospital
University Hospital North (what we still call Multnomah County Hospital)
VAMC Skybridge (including a stunning night shot with the lighted bridge)

Many of these images (probably the majority, although I haven't had time to make a complete survey yet) are completely new to our Historical Image Collection. We don't have Kohler Pavilion, the new Biomedical Research Building, or the Center for Health and Healing yet, but it's just a matter of time before we cajole, wheedle, or otherwise wrangle images out of a kindly donor's hands!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Walter Dandy, family man

As I mentioned about a week ago, I was invited to attend this morning's neurosurgical conference, a special talk on the neurosurgeon Walter Dandy, delivered by his daughter Mary Ellen Dandy Marmaduke.

Ms. Marmaduke, a warm and engaging woman of 79, showed photographs of her father, his family and friends, while recounting fond memories and humorous anecdotes. A few of the tidbits:

  • Dandy told his children that he had always gotten excellent grades. However, looking at the old report cards after his death, they discovered that while attending grade school in Sedalia, MO, Walter had gotten Ds in deportment.
  • Dandy used golf as a means of stress management. Mary Ellen, who used to caddy for him, reported that he routinely killed the ball, threw his clubs, and swore liberally. This was a source of extreme embarrassment for her, and she threatened to quit as his caddy if he didn't stop throwing things.
  • Whenever someone mentioned Harvey Cushing, Dandy would mutter: "son of a bitch."
  • Dandy had a few famous patients, including Margaret Mitchell (a "prima donna"), Dorothy Lamour's mother, and a Gypsy Queen who arrived at Hopkins with a vast entourage. When the Gypsy Queen died, despite Dandy's labors, Mrs. Dandy became convinced that the entire family would be kidnapped by the rest of the tribe. She had all the locks changed on the family home.
  • In 1941, Dandy developed a baseball helmet with plastic panels to protect the head. The prototype for that helmet now resides in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
  • Relaxing at home after a long workday, Dandy would always enjoy a cold Schlitz beer with dinner. Later, he would pay the children 10 cents per hour to rub his head until he fell asleep; if they could get off the bed without waking him up, the reward was an additional 25 cents. Mary Ellen doesn't remember ever being paid for that work...

As it turns out, faculty members in the Dept. of Neurosurgery here at OHSU were instrumental in getting Marmaduke's memoir of her father to press; until we get the book cataloged and into the OHSU Library, you can read Dandy's letters online at the website for the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. We have some letters from Dandy to A.J. McLean, Oregon's first neurosurgeon, in Accession 2001-004.