WTHS May Meeting

Join us Monday May 4 at 7 pm at Memphis University School in the Wunderlich Auditorium, 6191 Park Ave.

Patricia LaPointe McFarland presents the history of Memphis medicine.

3350f229-7447-4d75-a593-c067abcd8300 From its herbs and roots folk medicine beginnings, Memphis medicine grew over the next two centuries, culminating in its reputation for world-class research hospitals, respected teaching facilities and cutting-edge procedures, as well as the city’s contemporary prominence as an incubator for bio-sciences and bio-technologies.

McFarland will take us through the first hospital in the state in 1830; the first medical schools in 1846; the military hospital centers during the Civil War; the tragic Yellow Fever epidemic of 1878; the origins and development of the medical center around Forrest Park at Union and Dunlap, once the city’s outskirts, eventually becoming the UTCHS complex; and the Memphis medical contributions in WWI.

Ms. McFarland holds a master’s degree in history from the University of Memphis and retired in 2006 as curator of collections in the Memphis and Shelby County Room of the public library. She is currently working on the archives of St. Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral whose rich history includes the church’s role in the Yellow Fever epidemic of the area.

McFarland and May Ellen Pitts are the authors of Memphis Medicine, The History of Science and Service with photographs curated by Dick Raichelson who holds a PhD in folklore/anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania. Mary Ellen Pitts holds a PhD in English from the University of Florida.

The book encompasses the nearly 200-year journey of the people, institutions and innovations that have transformed Memphis into the Mid-South’s epicenter of medical knowledge, education and expertise.


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