The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Spaghetti and Cherry Soup

Early on in the digitization project, I found a couple of folders that referred to interviews with Dr. Sabin that resulted in book chapters about him. These folders that contained correspondence between Dr. Sabin and the authors provided some insight. Today, I wanted to share a little about this in the blog.

Recipe for Spaghetti and Corned Beef a la Sabin, 1966

The first that I came across was a book by Theodore Berland called The Scientific Life (1962). Dr. Sabin is featured in Chapter 5, called “It Is Never Either-Or.” The second chapter I found was in a book called The Virus that Ate Cannibals (1981) by Carol Eron. Her chapter on Dr. Sabin was called “The Sculptor.” Both of these authors wrote to Dr. Sabin saying they wanted to write a book for the general reader was similar to the book Microbe Hunters by Paul de Kruif, which Dr. Sabin had said was an influential book on his life and career. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Spaghetti and Cherry Soup

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Trip to Brazil, 1980

Dr. Sabin's Statement to the press regarding his trip to Brazil, April 1980

Recently, I have been reading Polio, which is a collection of essays edited by Thomas M. Daniel and Frederick C. Robbins. Among the many interesting essays in the book is one by João Baptista Risi, Jr. He describes the different mass vaccination campaigns in Brazil, and in doing so, he discusses Dr. Sabin’s trip to the country in 1980 and its result.

The essay stated that Dr. Sabin offered his assistance to the Brazilian Minister of Health to implement the national vaccination days plan, using the oral polio vaccine. Dr. Sabin was a well-known figure in Brazil and had helped other countries implement vaccination campaigns. According to Risi, “[Sabin] was welcomed with great enthusiasm, as we looked forward to receiving technical advice on particular issues, and his support was necessary to insure public acceptance. Very surprisingly, however, he paid less attention to the proposed vaccination plan and focused special interest on defining more precisely the magnitude of the problem of poliomyelitis in Brazil” (p. 172). Apparently, Dr. Sabin “did not accept objections to his proposal” and left Brazil on an unpleasant note (p. 172). Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Trip to Brazil, 1980

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: John R. Paul and North Africa

When I was reading David M. Oshinsky’s Polio: An American Story awhile back, I noted a book that he briefly mentioned called A History of Poliomyelitis by John R. Paul, MD. I finally got around to looking at this book a little closer, and I thought that I would give you a glimpse into the relationship between Dr. Paul and Dr. Sabin.

Memorandum from Dr. Francis Blake, President for the Board for the Investigation and Control of Influenza and other Epidemic Diseases in the Army, 1943

According to the Yale University Archives and Manuscripts website, Dr. Paul was at the Yale School of Medicine for over 30 years, where he studied many diseases, including polio. Through his research on this disease, as well as his involvement as director of the Neurotropic Virus Disease Commission of the Armed Forces Epidemiological Board and the Virus Commission during the 1940’s, he and Dr. Sabin corresponded a lot! Our collection has several different folders dedicated to correspondence between Dr. Paul and Dr. Sabin, as well as other letters scattered throughout our Military Service, Oral Poliomyelitis Vaccine, and Poliomyelitis series. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: John R. Paul and North Africa

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Reports from a Scientific Meeting

Attendees of the Second International Conference on Live Poliovirus Vaccines pose for a group photograph.

Another photograph from our collection can be seen here. It was taken during the Second International Conference on Live (Attenuated) Poliovirus Vaccines, which was held in June 1960 at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. and sponsored by the Pan American Health Organization, the World Health Organization, and the Sister Elizabeth Kenny Foundation. According to the back of the photo, participants came together “to discuss [the live polio vaccine’s] present status, trends and possibilities for use of this type of vaccine to delineate guidelines for conduct of further work and field programs.” Dr. Sabin was in attendance. Can you spot him in the crowd? Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Reports from a Scientific Meeting

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Another Honor

What do Betty White, George Bush, Pope John Paul II and Whoopi Goldberg all have in common with Dr. Albert Bruce Sabin? They were all named Kentucky Colonels!

Card given to Dr. Sabin by the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels, 1963

In Dr. Sabin’s archives is a letter and membership card from the Honorable Order of the Kentucky Colonels. I found these documents to be interesting, especially since one of my colleagues working on the Sabin grant, Linda Newman, is also a Kentucky Colonel. The mission statement of this exclusive organization is “[t]he Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels, Inc. is irrevocably dedicated to and is organized and operated exclusively for charitable purposes…” The Colonels support many different causes, such as purchasing wheelchairs and books for children, in order to support their mission. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Another Honor

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Connecting Collections

Letter from Dr. Walters to Dr. Sabin, March 6, 1960

Among some of Dr. Sabin’s general files is a letter exchange between him and Dr. Raymond Walters, who was President of the University of Cincinnati from 1932 until 1955. These two short letters, dated March 1960, discuss an upcoming engagement where Dr. Sabin was speaking. These letters piqued my interest because the Archives and Rare Books Library on the University of Cincinnati campus has President Emeritus Walters’s manuscript collection (UA-73-20). I thought it would be interesting to take a look at some of Dr. Walters’s diaries to get an outside perspective on Dr. Sabin. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Connecting Collections

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Ripped from the Headlines!

Throughout his career, Dr. Sabin was featured in many headlines and articles. Many of his friends and colleagues sent him copies of these newspaper clippings over the years, which Dr. Sabin saved. I wanted to highlight some of them here, in order to give you some perspective as to what he was involved in over the years.

Sabin - Swine Flu Headline
This article on the swine flu vaccine appeared in The News and Courier, July 21, 1976.

Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Ripped from the Headlines!

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Lost in Translation

Being both a well-known scientist and a world traveler, Dr. Sabin’s collection of correspondence reflects many different parts of the world with letters in Russian, German, Portuguese, Spanish, Japanese, and more. As we move into the next phase of the Sabin digitization project, I will begin to look at the correspondence more closely, determining the important messages within each letter and assigning descriptive data (also known as metadata) to the letters so researchers can more easily search the material. In order to do this, I may need some help with those letters in foreign languages.

Here’s a recent example of a letter in a foreign language, as well as its background:

Letter from Dr. Hallauer to Dr. Sabin, 1957

Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Lost in Translation

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: The Weizmann Institute of Science

Dr. Sabin and Prime Minister Golda Meir
Dr. Sabin and Prime Minister Golda Meir at his inauguration as President, 1970

After Dr. Sabin’s long career at the University of Cincinnati and the Children’s Hospital Research Foundation, he became the President of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, from 1970 until 1972. His archives contain much of his correspondence and photographs from his time at the Institute.

According to the Weizmann Institute of Science’s website, Dr. Sabin was the first President of the Institute that was required to be a scientist. While serving as President, Dr. Sabin reorganized the Institute into “five scientific Faculties”: Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biophysics-Biochemistry, and Biology. While serving as President, Dr. Sabin rubbed elbows with some pretty important people, so I wanted to share some of these photographs with you. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: The Weizmann Institute of Science

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The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Dr. Sabin’s Name

A post from a couple weeks ago where I mention the renaming of the road outside of our building to Albert Sabin Way made me think of other places that have Dr. Sabin’s name. I thought I would briefly touch on some of the places that are named after him.

Sculpture in honor of Dr. Sabin, given by the Rotary Club of Cincinnati, 2001

One very close to where the Winkler Center is located is the Albert B. Sabin Education and Conference Center, which is located on the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center’s Main Campus. In 1999, the medical center announced the naming of the building after Dr. Sabin. The building opened in 2000 as part of a large renovation program for the campus. According to the hospital’s website, this Center contains meeting space, the hospital’s libraries, a cafeteria, and many hospital services. At the time of the announcement of the naming, a press release stated, “In naming our center for Dr. Sabin, we hope to inspire all of those we teach to follow his example.” Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Dr. Sabin’s Name

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