Chesney Archives
Search Menu

Explore our Material Culture collections below. Visit the Search Our Collections page to conduct keyword and advanced searches of artifacts in our collections.

Architectural Plans and Elements

Architectural drawings, plans, blueprints, models, and building elements span the entire history of Johns Hopkins, from the building of the hospital in the 1880s to the opening of the most recent facilities on the medical campus. Highlights include the nineteenth century ink-on-linen drawings for the original buildings of The Johns Hopkins Hospital by the firms of John R. Niernsee and Cabot and Chandler and planning documents and blueprints for the Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic by Grosvenor Atterbury. For more information about architectural drawings, contact us.

From left to right
Drawing of the William H. Welch Medical Library by Edward L. Tilton, Architect
Detail of an architectural drawing of The Johns Hopkins Hospital dome, John Niernsee, 1879

Medical Illustrations

The first medical illustration program, Art as Applied to Medicine, was created by Max Brödel, a Johns Hopkins medical illustrator. This collection of thousands of drawings, prints, and mixed media works by Max Brödel, Dorcas Padget, James Didush, William Didusch, Leon Schlossberg, Elizabeth Browning, and others is currently being processed and is available to researchers. Contact us for more information.

From left to right
Drawing by Leon Schlossberg illustrating a Teflon felt patch repair surgical procedure for atrial septal defect
Drawing by Leon Schlossberg illustrating the left internal view during mitral valve surgery

Armamentarium of Medicine, Nursing, and Public Health

The equipment, tools, and devices that are used in research, teaching, and clinical practice at Johns Hopkins make up the armamentarium collection. This includes prototypes for the first defibrillator, the clamp developed by Vivien Thomas for use in the blue baby operations, laboratory instruments from John Jacob Abel, Adolf Meyer, George Gey, and others. Also in the collection is a comprehensive set of nursing uniforms from The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Browse theses objects in our Featured Artifact Collections or use a keyword search on our Search Our Catalog page to find these artifacts in our collection.

From left to right
Monroe Calculator, used by statisticians in public health Circa 1950s Manufactured by Monroe Calculating Machine Company, Incorporated
Stainless steel lithotomy forceps, 20th century
Gigli saw, late 19th or early 20th century

Awards and Medals

This collection consists of the awards, statuettes, medals, and plaques that have been presented to Johns Hopkins doctors, nurses, professors, and administrators. Notable awards include the Lasker awards given to Helen Taussig, Alfred Blalock, and Vernon Mountcastle.

From left to right
United States Public Health Service Medal, awarded to Evelyn Ann Eckberg in 1968
Albert Lasker Award presented to Helen B. Taussig for distinguished contributions to cardiovascular surgery, 1954, bronze statuette on marble base
International Red Cross Florence Nightingale Award, awarded to Alice Fitzgerald in 1927

Personal Effects and Mementos

Finally, there are pins, posters, banners, and personal effects that commemorate events, achievements, and the lives of Johns Hopkins faculty, staff, patients, and their families. A notable collection of materials documents the Turtle Derby, an annual event where donations to the hospital were made through bets placed on “racing” turtles. Visit the Search Our Catalog page to conduct keyword and advanced searches for material culture.

From left to right
Pins from the annual Johns Hopkins Turtle Derby, various years, 1965-1992
Silk and fur top hat worn by William Halsted, late 19th century
Leather luggage with hotel and travel labels, belonging to William Welch, early 20th century

Support the Archives