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Morton Kramer was born in Baltimore. He received his A.B. in 1934 and his Sc.D. in 1939, both from the Johns Hopkins University. His first faculty appointment was as an instructor in preventive medicine at New York University in 1938. Thereafter, he took a number of positions with educational and government institutions, eventually rising in 1975 to become the director of biometry and epidemiology at the National Institute of Mental Health. In 1976, he came to the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health as a professor in the department of mental hygiene and biostatistics and remained there until his retirement in 1984. Kramer did important work in creating international standards in mental health diagnosis. He showed that practitioners in different countries frequently made different diagnoses, even though their patients presented the same or similar symptoms.

Scope and Content

The Morton Kramer Collection spans much of his professional career, emphasizing his tenure as a professor at Johns Hopkins. It contains correspondence, memoranda, notes, reports, subject files, manuscripts, reprints (by Kramer and by others), journals, research protocols, and grant applications. There are several items relating to international standards of diagnostic criteria for the classification of mental disorders. A large part of the collection pertains to Kramer’s affiliations with the World Health Organization.

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