The department acquires, preserves and makes available to the VCU community and the public rare materials of enduring historic and research value, including manuscripts, personal papers, photograph collections, oral histories and various institutional records. Comprising multiple formats and spanning the 19th to the 21st centuries, these materials support research, discovery and creative works across subjects and disciplines.
Our department collects primary source materials documenting the health sciences and the health care professions in Virginia. Manuscript collections include the personal papers of Virginia nurses, physicians, dentists and other health care practitioners as well as the records of various professional organizations. Nursing is particularly well represented.
Since the department maintains a variety of files and indices of its collections, researchers and visitors are encouraged to consult with staff for information needs. Most – but not all – of these collections can be found through ArchivesSpace-VCU Special Collections & Archives or VCU Libraries search. Researchers are also encourage to use Virginia Heritage, a union database of holdings in cultural institutions across the Commonwealth.
Collections of note
Resources related to nursing including: the Instructive Visiting Nurses Association records, Virginia Nurses Association records, Evelyn C. Bacon papers, Dorsye E. Russell papers, and Sadie Heath Cabaniss letters.
Dental holdings of note include: the Virginia Dental Association records, Harry Lyons papers, and the George F. Keesee collection.
Papers of former faculty at the Medical College of Virginia including Susan J. Mellette, Peter N. Pastore, Frances A. Hellebrandt, William T. Ham, Lewis H. Bosher, Jr., and Albert J. Wasserman.
Collections related to military medicine include: Association of Medical Officers of the Confederate Army and Navy records, Alton D. Brashear collection, and the R. Campbell Manson papers.
Resources documenting health care administration and delivery include: William T. Sangers papers, Edgar J. Fisher, Jr. papers, and the Charles P. Cardwell, Jr. collection.
Hours: Monday - Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Appointments are recommended.