Collection VC138 - Thomas H. Burford Photographs, Drawings, Certificates, and Artifacts

Nurse helping young Stanley Alan Bayless use her stethoscope. Earl Standlee shaking hands with Thomas H. Burford after presenting him with the Legion of Merit ... Portrait of Evarts A. Graham standing in front of bookshelves in an office. Thomas H. Burford gesturing at a shirtless patient's surgical sutures in front of a small audienc... Profile chest x-ray of a man. Group portrait of Dr. Lorde, Dr. Mark Snyder, Thomas H. Burford, Dr. Krause, and Dr. Bo Suggs in ... Group portrait of Thomas H. Burford with four unidentified men in formal dress. Group portrait of The Society of Clinical Surgery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Group portrait with William H. Burford and other attendees to a surgical conference. United States Military Training Certificate, Reserve Officers Training Corps, Senior Division. Reserve Officers' Training Corps Certificate, University of Missouri. United States Air Force Military Air Transport Service Certificate. United States Air Force Military Air Transport Service Certificate. Reproduction of Thomas H. Burford's Missouri Medical License. Associate Membership Certificate, The Society of the Sigma Xi. Membership card, Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society of North America. Membership Certificate, The Society of the Sigma Xi, Washington University, St. Louis Chapter. Reproduction of Thomas H. Burford's Doctor of Medicine Diploma, Yale University. Membership Certificate, Societe Internationale de Chirurgie. Certificate of Appointment to Lieutenant Colonel, Medical Corps, The Army of the United States.
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Reference code


Level of description



Thomas H. Burford Photographs, Drawings, Certificates, and Artifacts


  • 1922-1977 (Creation)


0.50 Linear Feet

Name of creator


Biographical history

Thomas H. Burford received his M.D. degree from Yale University in 1936. After serving his internship at Barnes Hospital under Evarts A. Graham, Burford entered the U.S. Army Medical Corps. During World War II, he headed the 2nd Auxiliary Surgical Group in North Africa. After the war, he joined Washington University's Division of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, and succeeded Graham as division head in 1951. He was well known as an innovator in open-heart surgery. In the 1960s, Burford was widely quoted for his public statements on behalf of tobacco firms disputing findings that indicated connections between smoking and lung cancer.

Scope and content

This collection consists of 64 photographs, drawings, certificates, and artifacts from the medical and military career of Thomas H. Burford. Photographs include group portraits with friends and colleagues and portraits of Evarts A. Graham. Drawings are by F.C. Kelly and depict surgical proceedures. Certificates include diplomas, awards, military appointment and discharge certificates, proclamations, certificates of appreciation, and in memorium certificates. Artifacts include a key to the city of Vicennes, Indiana, foreign currency collected during Burford's overseas military service during World War II, and a Society of Thoracic Surgery felt badge.

System of arrangement

Some items have been previously removed from this collection, which has led to an incomplete sequence of numbered items.

Conditions governing access

The collection is open and accessible for research.

Technical access

Conditions governing reproduction

Users of the collection should read and abide by the Rights and Permissions guidelines at the Bernard Becker Medical Library Archives.

Users of the collection who wish to cite items from this collection, in whole or in part, in any form of publication must request, sign, and return a Statement of Use form to the Archives.

For detailed information regarding use of this collection, contact the Archives and Rare Book Department of the Becker Library (

Preferred Citation:

Item description, Reference Code, Bernard Becker Medical Library Archives, Washington University in St. Louis.

Languages of the material

  • English

Scripts of the material

  • Latin

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"Describing Archives: A Content Standard, Second Edition (DACS), 2013."

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Archivist's note

© Copyright 2019 Bernard Becker Medical Library Archives. All rights reserved.

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