Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Osler Hall Refreshed!

When Brooke Buckley, M.D. was inaugurated as President of MedChi, she hosted a Silent Auction to raise funds for the refreshment of Osler Hall. Two of our board members kindly matched those and other funds which were donated. Over the Christmas holiday break, we undertook a sprucing up of Osler Hall, to much acclaim!

The main steps to the refreshment were:

  • Painting the room in a warmer color
  • Adding a chair rail
  • Adding trim to the doors
  • Painting the dais
  • Purchasing new tables and chairs
  • Rehanging and adding paintings.
There were about eight paintings in Osler Hall, with Sir William Osler as the centerpiece behind the dais. We brought up paintings from the basement lunchroom and added them, gallery-style, to Osler Hall. We hired a professional art installation specialist to hang the artwork.
In addition to updating to a gallery-style room, we also bought new tables and chairs! I had found a picture of Osler Hall in the early 1960's, complete with ashtrays and the tables we're still using. We bought tables with wheels which will save a lot of time and effort by the staff who frequently has to reconfigure the room. The chairs we bought are actually comfortable, and slightly wider than the original ones. 

Osler Hall was christened on Monday, January 9th for the first meeting of the 2017 Legislative Council. 

During a break, the entire group gathered for a ribbon-cutting and nice round of applause for the donors who made the refreshment possible!

We are continuing the tradition of honoring our past while working for a better future for citizens of Maryland.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Happy New Year!

From all of us at MedChi, The Maryland State Medical Society,
and the Center for a Healthy Maryland,
along with Marcia Crocker Noyes, our friendly ghost, 

we wish you all of the very best for a happy and healthy 2017!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

The Flexner Report

I was asked to do a little searching of the Flexner Report for a board member, and as always, I find it to be a treasure trove of fascinating information and horrifying reports. From Wikipedia: The Flexner Report is a book-length study of medical education in the United States and Canada, written by Abraham Flexner and published in 1910 under the aegis of the Carnegie Foundation. Many aspects of the present-day American medical profession stem from the Flexner Report and its aftermath.

Essentially, each medical school in the US and Canada was examined on a sliding scale, using Johns Hopkins as the ideal.

After the report was issued, the number of medical schools dropped from 155 to 31, and the number of medical schools requiring an undergraduate degree soared to 92%.

The Flexner report changed medical education from often primitive conditions to more like what we know now. 

Medical schools became more standardized with educational and graduation requirements, exams, and curriculum to include both classroom and textbook work, as well as a specific amount of clinical work. 

There were some failings, including fewer women and minorities in medical schools, and the oversight and regulation of medical education by state governments. However, much of what is in the report is still relevant today.

To read the Flexner Report, please click here.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Marcia for the Holidays: Thanksgiving

As you might have seen, we usually dress Marcia for the holidays, but since I realized that this Thanksgiving is the 70th anniversary of her death, I am going to be a little more respectful.

There were two notices of Marcia’s death in the Baltimore Sun, the first on November 26th, announcing her death and saying that the service would be held at MedChi, the first time this had happened.

The second notice was a summary of the service, with lists of pall-bearers and other details. It appeared the day after the service was held.

Marcia is buried at Baltimore’s Greenmount Cemetery along with many other city luminaries of the time.

I hope that, at some level, Marcia knows how important she was to MedChi and to the field of medical libraries.

In making a living, she made a life. 

Monday, October 31, 2016

Happy Halloween!

Don’t forget our lecture about Marcia, the Friendly Ghost!
 Wednesday, November 2 at 6:30 p.m. in Osler Hall.

There will be a “candy bar” and sodas.
(With apologies to Sugar Free Kids)

Please rsvp to events@medchi.org

and let me know if you are attending.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Lecture: Marcia, The Friendly Ghost!

As much as we tease Marcia by dressing her up for the holidays, we have the utmost respect and admiration for what she did during her 50 year tenure at MedChi. In addition to creating the Medical Librarians Association, she was responsible for managing the building of our 1909 building, enlarging our library from 7,000 to 65,000 books and much more that we don’t know about.

We are hosting a lecture on Marcia’s academic and professional background, as well as her current status as ghost in residence at MedChi. Additionally, an MFA student at MICA will be showing some of her artwork featuring Marcia.

Poster for Lecture

Tickets, which are free for MedChi members, and $5.00 for non-members. For more information, or to make a reservation, please email here.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Death by Parrot

As I was searching our old bequests files, I came across a character whom I did not know. He was Dr. William Royal Stokes, a long-time MedChi member. He was also the Baltimore City Bacteriologist from 1896 until his untimely death in 1930.image

In the file, along with numerous solicitation and acknowledgement letters, bearing the signatures of luminaries including Alexius McGlannan, MD and our Marcia Noyes, I found an old newspaper column called “Man in the Street”. This was a weekly column which researched street names in Baltimore.

Now the position of City Bacteriologist doesn’t sound too grand, but Dr. Stokes was responsible for eliminating typhoid by cleaning up the City’s milk and water supplies. He started the battle against rats, a war which has not yet been won.

In the early years of the 1900’s, the Baltimore City Department of Health made it its business to destroy every parrot in the city, because they were carriers of the dangerous and often fatal Parrot Fever, or psittacosis. imageParrots, macaws, pigeons, ducks and other birds are carriers of this disease, mostly eradicated now. There are fewer than 50 reported cases a year, and those can be treated with antibiotics. Dr. Stokes realized that parrots carried the disease, and he made it his business to find the antidote to this. But this meant closely studying the dead parrots and eventually, he contracted psittacosis and died from it. image

Hundreds attended his funeral, including the Governor who was an honorary pall bearer. Dr. William Welch and his fellow physicians at MedChi raised money for a bronze tablet in the Municipal Building. They also raised funds for an annual lecture in his name and a library dedicated to bacteriology.

The city named a street for him – Stokes Drive – which is near the Gwynns Falls Park. image

 I never know what I will find and where it will lead me.