Efforts to expand the preservation and documentation of the University of Kansas Medical Center’s history resulted in the establishment of an institutional archives in 1988. Under the Department of History and Philosophy of Medicine, the Archives organizes, preserves, and promotes appropriate use of materials of enduring organizational, administrative, legal, and historical value. The core activities of the Archives include the collection, organization, and preservation of archival materials, and providing assistance to qualified researchers.
Spanning over one century of Medical Center history, the more than 3000 cubic feet of archival holdings present a broad range of materials including records from the Schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health. Also represented are Central Administration, Students Affairs, Audio Visual Services, External Affairs, and the Alumni Office.
The Archives contains numerous records and related materials pertaining to the history of the medical center, local, regional, and Kansas medicine, faculty records and personal papers of prominent local physicians, departmental histories, World War I and World War II medical records, records of the Schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, and many other materials relating to local medical history.
Other unique collections available through the Archives include the Spine and Orthopedic Historical Collections, early 20th century hospital patient records (1906-1920) and private physician records (1909-1980), which contain diagnoses, treatments and outcomes, many with hand-written physicians’ and nurses’ notes. These records may be used by qualified researchers with appropriate approval from the University of Kansas Medical Center’s Institutional Review Board.
The Archives also houses a substantial collection of photographs, movies, and publications deemed of historical interest to faculty, staff, students, and researchers.
The Oral History collection consists of transcribed interviews with former administrators, retired facutly, and other key individuals in the Medical Center's history. These interviews illuminate the historical evolution of the institution and compliment the written record by providing a "human perspective" through personal recollection.
In cooperation with other area historical agencies and professional organizations, the Archives participates in a variety of outreach activities, including volunteer and student internship programs, as well as involvement in exhibits, workshops, conferences and symposia.
Can’t find what you’re looking for on our web page? Need advice to proceed with your archival research? Can’t find the right collection? Our archivist will seldom lead you astray. Call or email for prompt, courteous consulting.
The purpose of the Pearce Fellowship in the History of Medicine is to attract scholars to the varied resources of the Department in order to facilitate research in the history of medicine, nursing, allied health and related sciences. The Department will grant fellowships to interested scholars who possess a viable topic well-suited to the collections that, in addition, will harmonize well with the scholar’s overall research aims. For further information please click here.