tv American Artifacts Mayo Clinic CSPAN May 4, 2019 10:00am-10:29am EDT
you are watching american history tv, 48 program -- 48 hours of american history programming. follow us on twitter for information on our schedule. >> the mayo clinic is consistently ranked as one of the top hospitals in america. next, on american artifacts, we visit rochester minnesota to learn about the origins of the clinic and its role in the community today.
>> mayo clinic is an american institution. it's the world's largest private multi-specialty group. means iseally specialists working together in a highly organized way, delivering a range of unique for the solets purpose of serving the needs of each individual patient. it's a motto that has expanded and grown to other medical centers for more than 150 years. this is the museum established mr. andenerous gift of mrs. matthews, loyal patients to the mayo clinic.
they said we want to add more voices to the choir. tell the stories through contemporary exhibits, designs. we are going to explore the history and living legacy. history.ient has a carriestory informs the you received today. just as you have a history. a our history is a living dynamic, part of who we are. where youe stage for are going in the future. put -- history is present with us.
a lot of people wonder how a medical center got started. mayo is a family name. he grew up in the industrial revolution, he developed a strong social conscience of giving back to others. he came to america in 1840's. in indiana he married a remarkable woman. you have a wonderful team are coming together. malaria was common. he came here seeking a healthier
future. worked in number of cities around the state. moved his family here to rochester, when the lincoln administration named him to be a union army examining doctor during the american civil war. his role was to see which young men were fit for military duty. his job was to see who is fit for service. -- family stayed here because mrs. mayo said we are not moving anymore. set up his practice. group inoys recalled a medicine like farm boys on a farm. they just absorbed his ideals and values. it was natural they would go
into medicine as their time came. now it's the summer of 1883. his eldest son just graduated medical school that spring. august, this is the midwest. a terrible devastating storm struck the city, causing death and distraction. most women had their families to look after. dr. mayo went down the street to academy of our lady of the lord. sent herr superior sisters. what we see here is mother alfred came to dr. mayo with a true vision.
she said we will build the hospital for the city if you and your sons will staff it. dr. mayo resisted. elderly, small town, we can't do this. mother alfred persisted. they shut hands, dr. mayo and .other alfred for you no legal contract, a bond of trust. from that, st. mary's hospital opened in 1889. if you think about it, in this tableau, men and women did not work him together as professional counterparts at that time. dr. mayo was a man, a man of science. he admired charles darwin. mother alfred, a woman of faith. named her order for the virgin mary. they found common ground in serving patients. if you get this, you get all the rest.
because you have different people, different skills and different points of view, but they come together for a common purpose. each one brought something unique to the equation. dr. mayo and louise raised their family right here in rochester, in this house, which is literally across the street from where we are right now. they made a momentous decision when the brothers were quite young. they decided they would mortgage this house and with that mortgage funding, purchase a microscope to help care for dr. mayo's patients. this is an example of a 19th-century microscope of the time that they would have used. the mayo boys were young. they were maybe eight, nine or four or five years old. two of them. microscope to help care for dr. they would always remember their parents' sacrifice. they grew up knowing medicine was a true calling. you entered medicine to serve other people and to work together in a cooperative manner. fast-forward to when the mayos, and we see here william and charles as adults, they were arguably the most successful doctors in america by the early 1920's.
remembering their parents sacrifice, and the example of the franciscan sisters, the mayo brothers and their wives, in 1819, donated all the assets of mayo clinic, the land, the building, equipment, and the majority of their life savings, to transform mayo from a private partnership into a not-for-profit organization. mayo clinic is here today because of their sacrifice and their generosity. we have talked about the origins of the mayo clinic here in heritage hall, but it is really worthwhile to visit the palmer building with my colleagues to get a feeling for how the clinic grew and flourished. >> right now, we are standing in this historical suite which is located in the palmer building. it is the suite where the last offices of dr. will and charlie mayo are located along with the board of governors room. this space is used as a museum today.
our patients and visitors are able to learn more about our history. how the mayos practiced medicine was much different than it is today. william was the physician who would go out into the country and get on his buggy and horse and take it out to the farm and visit the patients. surgeries were performed on kitchen tables, not in hospitals or in operating rooms settings. instruments in medicine were very crude. what you are looking at are some medicines that were carried in a positions bag. there are not many to select from. there was not a lot known about what would cure different ailments. this is what they had and would prescribe to patients. they would administer one dose and hope that it would work. the mayos practiced this but will they realized they needed larger space.
so they opted to rent some space in downtown rochester. here are some of the different locations they rented. there masonic temple was a newly built building, and they rented space on the second floor for our patients to be seen there. they worked in the masonic temple until 1914. this building represents the very first mayo clinic that was built by the mayo family. it housed an integrated group practice in medicine. the father instilled in the boys that they needed to have others join the practice. it is often quoted as saying, no one is big enough to be independent of others. they realized early on that they needed to hire other individuals with other talents and interests to provide the best care for our patients. dr. will and dr. charlie were surgeons, but they knew they needed people working in the laboratories, the x-ray department and all other aspects
of medicine to provide the best care for our patients. so here you will see the clinic, the first mayo clinic being built. it started in 1912 with the construction. in 1914, it opened. it was five floors. it housed all the different specialties. we were anticipating about 14,000 patients to arrive on an annual basis. but 26,000 were coming to rochester for care. we quickly outgrew this space and ended up building the next building that we will be talking about, which is the palmer building, currently, better was the second mayo clinic. this is 15 floors. and again, it encompassed all of the departments that the patients would need to be seen in. and it was an integrated group
practice. here is a model of an examining room that would have been in the 1914 mayo clinic building. it is very similar to our exam rooms today. you will see a couch where the patient or family member sits. an exam table, a physician's desk, a scale and a sink. very simple. cork floors were also both in the 1914 mayo clinic buildings as well as the mayo building because cork was easier on the legs and provided less stress so you could stand for longer periods of time. also in the clinical practice, they realized that the exam rooms and instruments used need to be cleaned. the cover over the bedding, that type of thing, needed to be changed frequently. the idea of antiseptic techniques were developed in england and they had seen it practiced over there in their travels. they brought those practices
back to mayo clinic. i am standing in dr. will's last offices. this would be used during his administrative years after he had retired from surgery, so 1928 is when he would have moved into this area. you will see his desk. his motto, he loved the truth and sought to know it. dr. will is described as the businessman, the administrative type. he was sometimes known to be more stern but he had a great sense of humor. he married his high school sweetheart, her father was on the case. she was the daughter of a local jeweler. they had five children but only two lived past infancy. two daughters, carrie and pheobe. both of the daughters married
prominent male surgeons. the daughters did not go into medicine. in 1928, when dr. will moved into this office, he was no longer practicing as a surgeon, however, he was very involved in the mayo clinic, yes, administratively. he sat on the board of governors until 1935 when he stepped down and let the younger individuals take over running the clinic. and he still was infinitely involved, knowing that patients were being taken care of. this is my favorite room we are standing in at the moment. it is the board of governors room. it was started because dr. will and dr. charlie in 1915 started the proceedings to set up the mayo clinic as a nonprofit organization. that involved setting up the board and we are still run by a board today. this is the board room. the honors and awards on the wall are of dr. will and dr. charlie from all over the world. they traveled all over the world to learn from others and bring back best practices to the mayo
clinic. what they would do is go and travel for several months each spring and fall. one always stayed back at mayo to tend to business. they would present and visit at other hospitals and became known to other physicians. dr. will really felt that jealousy amongst the medical profession would be a detriment and sharing knowledge was critical for the profession. you can tell by their honors and awards that they were well-respected by their peers. dr. will was asked to give an address at rush medical college for the graduating class in 1910. that is when he articulated that the needs of the patient come first, which is our primary value here at mayo clinic. all we do is for our patients. the mayos realized you needed him education, and you needed research to be able to provide
that great care for our patients. we still practice with that in our forethoughts. education, we have five schools at mayo clinic. we have many research labs so that we can advance medicine and science. the history of mayo clinic is interwoven with the history of rochester. the city has grown and expanded right along with mayo clinic to provide different services and amenities for our patients just like mayo clinic has. >> we are in a place of heritage hall called the treasures gallery. we have a number of cubbies that present different treasures, different facets of mayo's unique contribution to society. over here is an iconic artifact. it is a baseball signed by lou gehrig, the great new york yankees ballplayer when he was a patient here in 1939. the black-and-white photo shows mr. gehrig as a patient. he gave back in many ways. he befriended local youth
including a fellow named bob tierney. he gave batting lessons and pitching clinics and worked out with bob's team, the american legion team. bob asked lou gehrig to sign his lucky ball, and he did sign the ball, we think on lou gehrig's birthday, in june of 1939, the day he was diagnosed with als. a very poignant time. he signed the ball for bob and bob kept the ball for 75 years. the color photo shows bob as an elderly man still treasuring the baseball. at the end of his life, bob sold the ball to a local business executive here in rochester. andy bought the ball for the sole purpose that he and his daughter, taylor, whom we see in the photo, would give it to the mayo clinic to display, to inspire our patients. you have generosity across many generations coming together with this one baseball signed by a great american athlete. other examples here would be a
replica of the nobel prize that mayo clinic received in 1950. two mayo staff members, dr. is edward kendall, a laboratory scientist and dr. philip hinch a clinical rheumatologist, worked together on the invention and clinical use of cortisone. a drug many of us know now. they received this nobel prize, a classic example of a bridge from discovering something in a lab to applying it for the care of patients. the word came to mayo clinic by a text message, not the way you would get a text message on your phone today, but by a western union telegram, announcing that. they used their prize money for the nobel award and give it to their laboratory and clinical assistants. one of their assistants was a franciscan sister.
she could not accept the financial recognition so they found a way to deal with that. they said that is fine, we will send you on a study trip to europe and you can meet the pope. bill was found ways to contribute and get back to others. other artifacts, an early telephone. we have always loved technology at mayo clinic. dr. william warren mayo had the first telephone in this region. it connected his farmhouse with his office. so the idea of patient convenience, you could walk into the local area and call dr. mayo at his home. this was transformative, disruptive technology at that time. the local newspaper had to print an article -- how to place a telephone call. it was so new to people that they did not know what to do. the paper assured them that your voice and dr. mayo's voice would be as clear a mile apart as if
you are in the same room. they went on these long and collaborative directions -- you would talk into this and listen for that, and various things. it was a new way of communicating for your medical care. 1919, when the mayo family's brothers and wives made the joint decision to donate the assets of the clinic and their life savings to a nonprofit mission, here is the legal document they signed, and the inkwell they used, given to us by the mayo family. this deed of gift is a legal document, but it is kind of a statement of their philosophy. if you read through all the legalese and terminology, there is a couple of powerful sentences that really stand out. one of them, the mayos wrote that the purpose of the clinic, past, present and future must be measured by its contributions to the good of humanity. they did not say cure this disease or open this lab or run this program.
they said serve humanity. that will never go out of date. other examples here -- on the eve of world war ii, mayo began working in aviation. planes could fly higher but crews were crashing because they were blacking out at the high levels, not having sufficient oxygen. the planes were crashing, crews were getting killed. the mayos understood blood circulation. so we began working in different ways, top-secret during the war years. we developed pressurized chambers to keep the blood pressure up, allowing the pilot and crew to remain conscious while they flew at higher altitudes. we developed a high altitude oxygen mask and several other innovations of aerial medicine. this invention is still used in aviation today. it helped launch the jet age and
the space travel, which has roots in the mayo's aviation research. at that time, we charge the government one dollar a year for our wartime services. that whole philosophy of giving back. the knowledge of blood circulation then opened up the era of open-heart surgery. here you are seeing a large photograph of the early heart-lung bypass machine. there was a doctor in philadelphia, dr. gibbon, who developed a heart-lung bypass surgery. the machine would take over, giving oxygen to keep the patient alive. whendr. gibbon had one patient survive and four passed away, he abandoned it and could not go
on. mayo thought there was some merit in dr. gibbons' technology. so they reengineered his machine to create what is now called the gibbon heart-lung bypass machine. they transformed hurt surgery. if you know anybody who has had open heart surgery or a heart transplant perhaps, it began with a machine just like this. our first patient at mayo clinic, right of her here, linda stout, she was a five-year-old girl from bismarck, north dakota. she was dying of a heart defect. she had a short time to live. her parents brought her here with no other hope. her life was saved in a machine just like this. that is her sixth birthday party a few months after her
operation. she has had a wonderful life. a lovely person. i have interviewed her a number of times. linda came back to mayo clinic on the 50th anniversary of her heart surgery as a guest of honor at a surgical congress. and look what she gave us. she gave us her autographed book and her get well cards that her mother had saved for her. we tell our new employees when they come in here on their tour, behind every invention at the mayo clinic, there is always a linda. it was really sweet. typical autograph book. she has her world famous surgeon's autograph. she has got the cleaning lady's autograph. the landlady of her rooming house, the kid in the bed next to her, all jumbled together. you see her scrawl of her name. she had an innocent, lovely way with all these people who were all around her. and she tells the story, i
remember she described it vividly -- she was young, five years old -- the night before surgery, she remembers these tall, young men in white jackets. they got on their knees and talked to her eye to eye. they said, now, tomorrow, you will fall asleep. but when you wake up, you will feel a lot better. she said i had no idea how nervous they must have been, because i was their first patient. >> medicine is undergoing vast changes. even in my career, i have seen tremendous advances in medicine. the pace is only accelerating. and as we look at this exciting future, this dynamic potential of what medicine can do, we come back to the unchanging things. at mayo clinic, there is this union of this yin and yang of enduring values and dynamic innovation. the history of mayo is this firm foundation. that doesn't hold us back, it actually empowers us to go forward. we have to understand that history and evaluate it and interpreted for every generation. that will keep us grounded. it will give us the ability to go forward and the future is very exciting. [machines humming]
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dartmouth college jennifer miller talks about her book cold war democracy. the united states and japan. she discusses how the u.s. democracy opposed through psychological campaigns meant to win over the populace. historyness center and center cohosted this 90 minute event. christian: all right. i think we will get started. it is 4:00 on a monday afternoon, which means it is time for the washington history seminar. welcome, everyone to the wilson center, to this installment of the washington history seminar. i am christian ostermann, and i have the privilege of cochairing the seminar with professor erik from george washington university. i am delighted to see so