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Authority record
Library of Congress

Davis, Hallowell, 1896-1992

  • 70808
  • Person
  • 1896-1992

Hallowell Davis was born in New York City on August 31, 1896. He studied at Harvard University, receiving a B.A. there in 1918 and an M.D. in 1922. Davis's interest in electrophysiology developed while doing post-graduate research in England under Lord Adrian. In 1923, Hallowell Davis joined the Department of Physiology at the Harvard Medical School. His research concentrated on the electrophysiology of nerves. He became associated with the informal group of scientists known as "axonologists," which also included Joseph Erlanger, Herbert Gasser, and others of WUSM. In the 1930s Davis began concentrating on problems relating to hearing, but was also active in research on electrical activity in the brain. He contributed to the development of one of the first ink-writing electroencephalographs. During World War II he did vital war-related research on human tolerance to loud sounds and on the development of hearing aids.

Hearing aid research brought Davis into frequent contact with Central Institute for the Deaf, which was a subcontractor to a Harvard project. In 1946 he accepted an offer to establish a Research Department at CID and also to join the WUSM Departments of Physiology and Otolaryngology.

Among his first major projects in St. Louis was measurement of effectiveness of fenestration operations pioneered by Theodore Walsh. Davis's use of speech in these hearing tests was the beginning of speech audiometry. He became a leading figure in the development of the first American standards for audiometers and the adoption of the international zero reference level as part of that standard. He continued research under several contracts with the U.S. Armed Forces, contributing to work in ultrasonics, mechanical shock, and other areas. In the 1960s he was a member of the National Research Council's Committee on SST (super-sonic transport) and Sonic Boom.

Hallowell Davis retired officially in 1965, but remained active as CID Director of Research Emeritus and Professor Emeritus of Otolaryngology. In 1976 he was awarded the National Medal of Science by President Gerald R. Ford. Davis died in 1992.

Irene Walter Johnson Institute of Rehabilitation

  • 06814732‏
  • Corporate body
  • 1950-present

In 1950 Irene W. (Mrs. Oscar) Johnson donated $235,000 to Washington University for the establishment of a medical rehabilitation facility as a unit of the McMillan Hospital. In October 1959 the Irene Walter Johnson Institute of Rehabilitation opened at 509 S. Euclid Avenue, between the McMillan Hospital and the Washington University Clinics. Services of the Institute were coordinated through the Washington University School of Medicine’s Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health.
Source: Women in the Health Sciences http://beckerexhibits.wustl.edu/mowihsp/win/Timeline/IWJInstitute.htm

Senturia, Ben H.

  • 150641
  • Person
  • 1910-1982

Ben Senturia (1910-1982) was an otolaryngologist who began his practice in St. Louis in 1939. Senturia was educated at Washington University earning his A.B. in 1931 and his M.D. in 1935. After an internship at the St. Louis City Hospital and an additional internship and residency in otolaryngology at the McMillan-Barnes Hospital, Dr. Senturia joined the faculty of Washington University School of Medicine in 1938. He also worked with closely with Max Goldstein and Dr. Richard Silverman at the Central Institute for the Deaf. His World War II service was with the U.S. Air Force in the research section of the School of Aviation Medicine where he conducted major investigation in noise induced hearing loss and in the infections of the external ear.

After the war, Senturia taught medical students and graduate students and conducted major research programs in otolaryngology. His clinical and basic research in external otitis resulted in two textbooks and over 80 scientific papers. In 1952, he became director of the department of otolaryngology at the Jewish Hospital of St. Louis. He was also president of the American Otological Society from 1972-1973. Arthur Proetz appointed him associate editor of the Annals of Otology, Rhinology, and Laryngology in 1958 and he became its editor in 1966.

Barnes-Jewish Hospital

  • Corporate body
  • 1993-

In November 1992, Barnes and Jewish Hospitals signed an affiliation agreement, agreeing to pool resources wherever possible. This affiliation agreement was completed in March 1993 to create Barnes-Jewish, Incorporated (BJI). In April of 1993, BJI and Christian Health Services announced that they would affiliate to create BJC Health System, an affiliation which was finalized in June 1993. In January of 1996, a merger of Barnes and Jewish Hospital, built on the sharing of resources which began with the completion of the affiliation agreement in 1993, was legally completed, and the two became the present day Barnes-Jewish Hospital. Barnes-Jewish Hospital is consistently ranked among the best hospitals in America by U.S. News and World Report.

Lacy, Paul E.

  • Person
  • 1924-2005

Paul E. Lacy was a professor emeritus of Washington University School of Medicine and a pioneer in the treatment of diabetes, having developed islet transplantation in the 1950s. He graduated from the Ohio State University with a B.S. in 1944 and a M.D. in 1948. Lacy completed graduate work in anatomy and experimental pathology at the Mayo Clinic and received a Ph.D. in the discipline from the University of Minnesota in 1955. In the same year, Washington University School of Medicine appointed him to be an assistant professor in the Department of Anatomy. It was during that time Lacy began his groundbreaking research of endocrine cells in the pancreas that led to the discovery and success of islet transplants as an experimental treatment for Type I diabetes mellitus throughout the 1970s and 1980s.

Due to his rising reputation for his research, Lacy was named the Edward Mallinckrodt Professor and chair of the Department of Pathology in 1961, which he held for 23 years until his retirement in 1984. Along with his work in medicine, Lacy was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and helped create the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Mackie, Anita

  • n88260181
  • Person
  • 1930-

Anita Whitney Mackie is a former assistant professor of preventive medicine at Washington University School of Medicine who spent the majority of her career working on health services and agricultural issues in Africa. Born in Belfast, Northern Ireland IN 1930, Mackie holds degrees from McGill University (B. Sc. 1952), Cornell University (M.S., 1954), and Michigan State University (PH.D. Communications, 1962). She originally began her professional career as an agricultural economist in Nigeria for Stanford University and served on Nigerian relief in 1967-1968, but the Biafran War forced her return to the United States. At that point in 1970, she became a member of the Washington University School of Medicine faculty. At Washington University, Mackie acted as a liason between the medical center and the division of Health Care Research. She was assistant professor of Health care services in preventative medicine (communication). In the early 1970s, she was called back to Africa and spent the next two decades working with USAID and the Foreign Service in Chad. In her retirement years, Mackie has lived in Zimbabwe, South Africa, and the U.S.

Sources: curriculum vitae, 1970; Washington University School of Medicine catalog, 1970/71-1973/74

Sonnenwirth, Alexander C.

  • n79005678
  • Person
  • 1923-1984

Alexander C. Sonnenwirth was born in Oradea, Romania into a German-speaking Jewish family. In addition to German, Sonnenwirth learned Romanian, Hungarian, and Hebrew as a child. After completing his secondary education, Sonnenwirth went to Budapest to stay with relatives while he worked as a photographer. However, World War II shattered the world in which he and his family lived. Most of the Jews of Oradea, including Sonnenwirth's parents, were sent to death camps by the German invaders. Sonnenwirth escaped that fate, but was forced to serve in a labor gang for the duration of the war until he was rescued by Allied forces.

Immediately after the war, Sonnenwirth lived in a camp for displaced persons in Marburg, Germany. He was awarded a Hillel Scholarship which enabled him to come to the United States to study bacteriology at the University of Nebraska. After earning a Bachelor's degree in 1950, Sonnenwirth continued his studies at Purdue University where he graduated with a Master's of Science in 1953. While a student, he married Rosaline Soffer, and in 1953, the Sonnenwirths moved to St. Louis when he was appointed Assistant Director of the Division of Bacteriology at Jewish Hospital.

Sonnenwirth became the director of the division in 1955 and began doctoral studies in bacteriology at Washington University. Studying under Dr. Theodore Rosebury of the School of Dentistry, Sonnenwirth received his PhD in 1960. In addition to his duties at Jewish Hospital, Sonnenwirth served several academic appointments including Instructor of Bacteriology in the School of Dentistry (1958-1961) and as Assistant Professor in the School of Medicine for the Departments of Microbiology (1962) and Pathology (1968). In 1970, he was promoted to Associate Professor in the latter two departments and became a full Professor in 1977.

Sonnenwirth's scientific contributions included both 'pure' research and innovation in clinical technology. His chief research specialty was the study of anaerobic gram-negative bacilli. His enormous knowledge in this and related fields was expressed in the publication of over one hundred scientific papers and summarized in his editorship of the sixth, seventh, and eighth editions of Gradwohl's Clinical Laboratory Methods and Diagnosis (1963, 1970, 1980). He and his colleagues of the Microbiology Laboratory at Jewish Hospital were leading evaluators of new equipment and procedures, particularly of automated testing instrumentation.

Sonnenwirth was for many years a key participant in professional associations of microbiologists and their conferences, symposiums, and seminars. This activity included extensive travel within the U.S. and abroad. Sonnenwirth is remembered for his services to the American Society for Microbiology, having been among the organizers of the Clinical Microbiology Section in 1963 and its chairman from 1970 to 1973. Sonnenwirth was chosen by the American Society for Microbiology to receive its highest professional recognition, the Becton-Dickinson Award, in 1984.