In this oral history project, Dr. Edwin McCleskey and his associates, medical students James Carter and William Geideman, conducted interviews with 13 individuals who played a role in the desegregation of Washington University School of Medicine and its associated hospitals.
The interviewees include Ella Brown, the last Director of Nursing Services at Homer G. Phillips Hospital; Dr. Robert Lee, the first Assistant Dean for Minority Students at the School of Medicine; Dr. Julian Mosley, the second Black graduate of the School of Medicine; and Dr. Howard Phillip Venable, the last chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at Homer G. Phillips and a vocal advocate for civil rights.
Topics include the segregated facilities at Barnes Hospital and St. Louis Children’s Hospital prior to integration; the events and decisions leading to desegregation in the medical school and hospitals; recruitment, admissions, and retention of minority students at the School of Medicine; Homer G. Phillips Hospital, its role in the Black community, and its closure; the state of health care for the Black community in St. Louis; and the desegregation of local and national medical societies.
The collection also includes related documents donated by some of the interviewees. For more information, please see the Washington University Medical Center Desegregation Project Records
page in the Becker Archives Database. For information regarding access, please contact Becker Archives at email@example.com
Dr. McCleskey was an assistant professor in the Department of Cell Biology and Physiology at the School of Medicine at the time he developed this project and conducted the interviews with his associates.
The interviews were all recorded on audio cassette tapes. Additions to the interview transcripts are marked with brackets. Interviewees were allowed to review these transcripts and make grammatical corrections. Also, interviewees were allowed to suggest additions or retractions from the transcript to ensure their meaning was clear.
In general, there are some discrepancies between the audio recording and interview transcripts, including elisions and occasional rewordings, however these changes do not create any significant impediments to understanding the content of the interviews. In some cases, noted in the interview abstract and the transcripts, interviewees made substantial edits to their interview transcripts, which created additional discrepancies between the recording and transcript, but the edits do not interfere with understanding the original content.
Oral histories with Dr. William C. Banton and Dr. James M. Whittico were included as part of this project, but have restricted access.
Please contact Becker Archives at firstname.lastname@example.org
Submissions from 1990
William C. Banton, II Oral History, William C. Banton
Ella B. Brown Oral History, Ella B. Brown
David Goldring Oral History, David Goldring
Samuel B. Guze Oral History, Samuel B. Guze
John C. Herweg Oral History, June 13, 1990, John C. Herweg
John C. Herweg Oral History, June 29, 1990, John C. Herweg
Lawrence I. Kahn Oral History, Lawrence I. Kahn
Michael M. Karl Oral History, Michael M. Karl
William M. Landau Oral History, William M. Landau
Robert Lee Oral History, Robert Lee
Julian C. Mosley, Jr. Oral History, Julian C. Mosley Jr.
Paul N. Saunders Oral History, Paul N. Saunders
Howard Phillip Venable Oral History, Howard Phillip Venable
James M. Whittico Oral History, James M. Whittico