McGoogan News

From the archives: schools and colleges at UNMC

Pulse SAHP 1972

By John Schleicher

The academic structure of UNMC includes six colleges, which have been established over the last 130 years. Two of these six colleges started out as privately-owned, for-profit institutions; with three others established first as schools before they were elevated in rank to become colleges.

The oldest college is the College of Medicine, which began as the Omaha Medical College in 1881, and affiliated with the University of Nebraska in 1902. The newest college, as of July 2015, is the College of Allied Health Professions, which began as the School of Allied Health Professions in 1972.

In between, four other colleges have been established over the years. The College of Dentistry started in 1899 as the Lincoln Dental College, and became part of the university in 1903. The College of Pharmacy started as a School of Pharmacy in 1908, and was made a college in 1915. It subsequently moved to Omaha in the 1970s when the present College of Pharmacy building was built.

The School of Nursing was started in 1917, when the University Hospital opened, and it was made a college in 1972. The College of Public Health was organized in 2006.

In 1968, when the University of Nebraska administrative structure was reorganized, all health professions programs were placed under the administrative umbrella of the medical center, regardless of their location across the state. Since that time, the campuses (Lincoln, Omaha and the Medical Center—the Kearney campus joined in 1991), were considered semi-autonomous degree granting institutions within the same system, each with their own chancellor, and a university system president located in Lincoln.

The archives has various resources available if you are interested in finding out more about the history of any of UNMC’s colleges. To visit the UNMC archives, contact the Special Collections Department at 402-559-7094 to schedule an appointment or inquire at the AskUs desk on the 6th floor of the library.

Parking on campus “back in the day”

University Hospital, 1927
University Hospital, 1927

By John Schleicher

As students and faculty return to the campus for the start of the new academic year, parking can sometimes become an issue. As with most academic institutions, getting that ideal parking spot just does not happen every time.

Among the many historical images of the UNMC campus is this view from 1927, showing Unit I and Unit II of University Hospital, looking to the south/southwest. If you were standing in this spot today, Wittson Hall would be to the left (east) side, with Eppley Science Hall to the north, behind the photographer.

The Dean’s office for the College of Medicine was then located on the second floor in the front wing of the hospital (to the far left in this photo). At the time, the Dean also served as the Superintendent of the hospital. Among the various vintage automobiles in this scene would be the cars of faculty and administrative staff. Of course, not as many students had cars at that time, relying on Omaha’s street car system to get around, or living close enough to campus to walk.

So, as you search for that ideal parking spot today, remember that parking has been an issue for nearly the entire history of our campus!


Regents approve library recognition for Dr. Leo McCarthy

The University of Nebraska Board of Regents Thursday approved the naming of the McGoogan Library of Medicine Special Collections Suite in honor of Leo J. McCarthy, M.D.

A 1964 medical school graduate of UNMC, Dr. McCarthy is professor emeritus at Indiana University School of Medicine, where he served on the faculty from 1971-2003. At Indiana, Dr. McCarthy was professor of pathology/laboratory medicine, pathology, and pediatrics, and also was the longtime director of the division of transfusion medicine.

During his academic career, Dr. McCarthy authored more than 300 publications and was the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including the 2014 UNMC College of Medicine Distinguished Alumnus Award.

Emily McElroy, director of the McGoogan Library of Medicine, said Dr. McCarthy has been a huge supporter of the McGoogan Library of Medicine and particularly the history of medicine.

“Dr. McCarthy’s passion for the history of medicine and the McGoogan Library of Medicine makes this a special moment for our library staff and faculty,” McElroy said. “John Schleicher, our head of special collections, and I could not be more grateful for our friendship with Dr. McCarthy. Through the support of individuals like Dr. McCarthy, the library’s special collections program will continue its tradition of excellence.”

The Special Collections Suite is located on the eighth floor of the library, room 8000A. It includes the office area for the head of special collections as well as the library’s Nebraska collection (books and journals). In addition, archival collections relating to the history of UNMC and the history of the health professions in Nebraska are kept in the suite.

Naming the suite in honor of Dr. McCarthy marks the sixth named area in the McGoogan Library, McElroy said. Previous library namings include:

  • Guinter Kahn, M.D., College of Medicine class of 1958 – sixth floor;
  • George Rosenlof, Ph.D., University of Nebraska-Lincoln administrator and the uncle of UNMC alum Robert Rosenlof, M.D. – sixth floor, computer cluster area;
  • Rudolph Sievers, M.D., College of Medicine class of 1939 – eighth floor, room 8012, Sievers Facility for Interactive Instruction;
  • Clarence Bantin, M.D., College of Medicine class of 1924 – eighth floor, north rare book room; and
  • James Linder, M.D., College of Medicine class of 1980 – sixth floor, The Linder Library Lounge.

A dedication ceremony and reception for Dr. McCarthy will be held at the McGoogan Library of Medicine at 10 a.m. on Sept. 25.

Vesalius exhibit now on display

By John SchleicherVesalius skeleton

A new display, featuring Andreas Vesalius, is now available on the 8th floor of the library.  Andreas Vesalius (1514-1564), was born on December 31, 1514.  He was the leading anatomist of his day, professor at the University of Padua in Italy, and he corrected some anatomical misinformation from the ancients such as Hippocrates and Galen.  See a story on him here.

Vesalius’ landmark work was De corporis humani fabrica libri septem (Seven books on the fabric of the human body), first published in 1543, with a second edition published in 1555.  The McGoogan Library owns a second edition, donated in 1959 by the estate of Goldie (Goddin) Potts, widow of John B. Potts, M.D, (1876-1948), Professor of Otolaryngology at the University of Nebraska College of Medicine from 1912 to 1937. He received his M.D. in 1907 from the College of Medicine.  According to a recent census in which we participated, there are 58 copies of the 1555 edition in 49 university and institutional libraries across the U.S.

Also on display on the 6th floor, behind the former reference desk area, is a two volume set, The fabric of the human body: an annotated translation of the 1543 and 1555 editions, by Daniel H. Garrison and Malcolm H. Hast, published in 2014.  This is a complete translation from the Latin, and facsimile of both the first and second editions which patrons can look through at their leisure.

From the archives: Notes on nursing history

Engraving of Florence Nightingale (from a portrait), cover of the Trained Nurse and Hospital Review, Vol. LXX, No. 4, April 1923.
Engraving of Florence Nightingale (from a portrait), cover of the Trained Nurse and Hospital Review, Vol. LXX, No. 4, April 1923.

By John Schleicher

When we consider nursing history, most of us know the name Florence Nightingale (1820-1910). The library’s rare books collection includes the first British (1859) and the first American (1860) editions of Nightingale’s landmark work Notes on Nursing: What it is, and what it is Not.

Following Nightingale’s work in the 19th century, a number of other nursing innovators and educators, in the United States and other countries, wrote works dealing with the history and professionalization of nursing. Among these important works are:

  • Nursing: its Principles and Practice: for Hospital and Private Use (1893), by Isabel Hampton Robb (1859-1910)
  • A History of Nursing: the Evolution of Nursing Systems from the Earliest Times to the Foundation of the first English and American Training Schools for Nurses (four volumes, 1907-1912), by Mary Adelaide Nutting (1858-1948)
  • A Short History of Nursing: From the Earliest Times to the Present Day (1920), by Lavinia Dock (1858-1956).

Obvious from these titles, the history of nursing and evolution into a profession are very important to these authors.

To see more works on the history of nursing visit the library’s rare book rooms and history of medicine collection. Contact the Special Collections Department to schedule an appointment or inquire at the AskUs desk on the 6th floor of Wittson Hall.