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Morris H. Saffron, MD, PhD - Papers, 1927 - 1992

Morris H. Saffron, MD, PhD
Papers, 1927 - 1992

86-10; 1-116; 91-146; 92-102; 92-151; 93-0


Morris H. Saffron, MD, PhD

Morris H. Saffron, MD, PhD (1905-1993) was born in Passaic, NJ. He earned a bachelor's degree in 1925 from Columbia University and his medical degree from the University of Maryland in 1928. Dr. Saffron was an authority on American Colonial medicine, archivist and historian of the New Jersey Medical Society, and a practicing dermatologist in New Jersey and New York. He returned to Columbia in the 1960s to study history and earn a Masters degree and later, a doctorate in the field in 1968. Dr. Saffron authored several books including Samuel Clossy: The Existing Works (1967), Maurus of Salerno (1972), and Surgeon to Washington: Dr. John Cochran, 1730-1807 (1977), as well as many articles on medical history topics.

In 1940, he was called to active service as a flight surgeon, having qualified for the position before the eruption of World War II, and served as chief medical officer of the New York Aviation Cadet Examining Board for two years. He later served as chief of dermatology at several Army hospitals, retiring as a lieutenant colonel in 1945, when he resumed his medical practice in New Jersey (and later in New York) and active participation in professional associations. He served as president of the New Jersey Dermatological Society, then as president of the Academy of Medicine of New Jersey, and later of the New Jersey Academy of Science.

In 1958, Dr. Saffron was hired as professor by the new Seton Hall College of Medicine to deliver the first formal series of lectures on medical history offered in the state. He subsequently taught medical history at Kean College (now University), the former Rutgers Medical School (now UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), and the former New Jersey College of Medicine (now UMDNJ).

Dr. Saffron served as chairman of the Friends of the Columbia Libraries from 1967 to 1972. In 1974, Columbia University awarded him its Presidential Citation for Distinction. He served as a trustee of the New Jersey Historical Society until his death. Dr. Saffron was a fellow of the American Antiquarian Society, the Morgan Library, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Dr. Saffron was one of the founders of the Medical History Society of New Jersey, where an annual lectureship was established in his honor in 1979. He served as the chairman of the the Library Committee of the Academy of Medicine of New Jersey and was instrumental in influencing the Academy to donate its closing library to the College of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (now UMDNJ), which included rare books -- the basis for the University Libraries' Special Collections. In honor of Dr. Saffron's role in the Academy's donation, the rare book collection was named the Morris H. Saffron Collection of Books on Historical Medicine. Dr. Saffron further supported the University Libraries and the UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School by establishing endowments within each unit, the first for the acquisition of rare and antiquarian library materials and the second for the study of the history of medicine by University students.

For additional information on Dr. Saffron, SEE ALSO (MC/25) Medical History Society of New Jersey Records

Scope & Content Note

The papers of Morris H. Saffron, MD, date from 1927 until 1992. The are arranged in three series: I. Letters received, II. Articles written by Dr. Saffron, and III. Subject files. Letters received are arranged in chronological order except two files organized by subject: 1. Rutgers Medical School/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, where he lectured in medical history, and 2. Academy of Medicine of New Jersey and its rare book collection that was donated to the UMDNJ University Libraries in 1978. Dr. Saffron's articles, both published and unpublished on diverse topics in medical history, are arranged alphabetically by title. Several of his papers read before The Charaka Club in New York City are also included in this series, as well as a copy of his Masters thesis. Subject files are arranged alphabetically. Subject files document his medical career as a practicing dermatologist, as well as his academic and professional achievements.

Size of Collection:    2.0  l.f.

Provenance:    Gift of Morris H. Saffron, MD in 1986, 1991, and 1992.


Box Folder Contents
11Letters Received, 1927-28.
2Letters Received, 1938-39.
3Letters Received, 1940-49.
4Letters Received, 1950-59.
5Letters Received, 1960-63.
6Letters Received, 1964-66.
7Letters Received, 1967-69.
8Letters Received, 1970-72.
9Letters Received, 1973-76.
10Letters Received, 1977-79.
11Letters Received, 1980-84.
12Letters Received, 1985-89.
13Letters Received, 1990-92.
14Letters Received Regarding Rutgers Medical School/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, 1963-91.
15Letters Received Regarding AMNJ Rare Book Collection at UMDNJ, 1971-92.
16"The Academy as a Cultural Force in NJ," AMNJ Bull, Vol 7 (June1961).Includes typescript.
17"Academy of Medicine of NJ-a Brief History," Bull NJAS, Vol 9, No 2 (1964).
18"The Academy of Medicine of NJ-a Brief History," Jl MSNJ, Vol 81 (Sept 1984).
19Academy of Medicine of NJ. Articles by Dr. Saffron published in Newsletter, Fall 1980-Spring 1983.
20"Agostini Bertini, the Doctor as Patriot," n.d. n.p.
21"Acquackanock Bridge: A Pivotal Point in the American Revolution," flyer prepared for the Historical Commission, Passaic, NJ, n.d.
22"Alcoholism..." Tran AMNJ,1972.
23[Aviation Medicine], typescript for Funk & Wagnall's Ency.,n.d.
21"Benjamin Rush-Patriach Reconsidered," NYSJM, Aug 1979.
2"Bernard Sachs (1858-1944)," paper read at The Charaka Club, n.d.
3Book Reviews (misc.).
4Book Reviews in History Reviews Feb 1978-Nov/Dec 1986.
5"Clinical Consultation and Letters," NJ Med, Vol 88 (June1991).
6"Confrontation in New Jersey," JMSNJ, Vol 73 (Dec 1976).
7"The Cultural Contribution of the Physician in America, 1750-1820," Jan 1949 [Masters Thesis].
8"Cutaneous Diptheria as a Military Problem," Arch Derm & Syph, Vol 51 (May 1945).
9"Death in Oriental Religion and Philosophy," unpub. typescript [annotated].
10"Dermatitis Herpetiformis," JMSNJ, Vol 46 (Sept 1949).
11"Dermatology and the War," Milit Surg, Vol 91 (Nov 1942).
12"Dibdin Redivivus: A Biographical Tour in Italy," June 1962, unpub. typescript.
13"The Doctor Dissected," unpub. typescript.
14"Dr. John Bard of Hyde Park," Columbia Lib Cols, Vol 32 (Feb 1983).
15"Dr. John Cochran: The New Jersey Years," in Studies in Medical History of NJ. Dedicated to Edward Wharton Sprague, Acad Med NJ Bull, Vol 16 (Dec 1970) [1st NJ Med Hist Symp].
16"The Doctrine of the Four Degrees," [1949], unpub. typescript.
17"Earliest Medical Broadside," Proc AAS, Vol 93 (Apr 1983).
18["Early Use of Penicillin in Dermatology"], read at Kansas City, 1943.
19"Effective Control of Pruritus with a New Antihistaminic-Calcium Combination," Jl Med Soc NJ, Vol 52 (July 1955).
20"Euthanasia in the Greek Tradition," read at 3rd Euthanasia Conference, NYAM, Dec 5, 1970.
21"Familial Lichen Planus," Arch Derm & Syph, Vol 42 (Oct 1940).
22"A Famous Fifteenth Century Pilgrimage to the Holly Land," Columbia Lib Cols, Vol 19,1970.
23"George Washington Immunizes Thus Saves his Army," n.d., unpub. typescript, 42 pp.
24[Gertrude Annan], The Academy Bookman, Vol 24, No 2, 1971.
25"George Franklin Fort (1843-1909)," introduction to the reprint edition of Fort's Medical Economy During the Middle Ages (1883), 1873.
26"Heirs to Osler: Medical Bibliophiles in America," read before The Charaka Club, Nov 19, 1985.
27"History of Medicine: Hippocrates' Pseudoepigraphic Writings," NJ Med, Vol 89 (Mar 1992).
28A History of the Academy of Medicine of NJ, 1911-1981, [Lawrenceville, NJ: The Academy] 1981.
29"Image of the Physician," Bull Passaic CMS, Vol 33 (Apr & May 1970).
30"The Influence of Dublin on American Medicine," n.d. unpub. typescript. 2 copies.
31"James Henry Clark," AMNJ Bull, Vol 11 (Mar 1965).
32"Jerome Pierce Webster (1888-1974)," read at The Charaka Club, Mar 19, 1975.
33"John Cochran (1730-1807): Director General of the Hospital of the United States." Trans & Stud Phys Phila,Vol 43 (Apr 1976)
34"Maurus of Salerno..." trans. By MHS., Trans Amer Phil Soc, Vol 62, Pt 1, New Ser (Jan 1972).
35[Maurus of Salerno], unpub. typescript.
36"Medical Aspects of the Middlebrook Encampments," JMSNJ, Vol 76 (May 1979).
37"A Medical Diploma of 1820," JMSNJ, Vol 69 (Aug 1972). Includes typescript.
38"Medical History: A History of Immunology," NJ Med, Vol 89 (Feb 1992). 2 copies.
39"Medical Legislation in the Colony of NJ," Columbia Lib Cols, Vol 22 (Feb 1980).
40"Medical Men and Events in Revolutionary New Jersey," in NJ Medicine in the Revolutionary Era 1763-1783, An Exhibition, Newark: NJHS, 1976.
41"The Medical World of Thomas Rowlandson," read before The Charaka Club, Mar 15, 1978.
42"Medicine," in Fund & Wagnall's Standard Reference Encyclopedia Vol 10, c1959-60.
43"My Experience at Gardiner General Hospital...," So Med Jl, Vol 38 (May 1945).
44"New York or Massachusetts,?" JAMA, Vol 245 (May 22/29, 1981).
45"New Jersey's Contribution to Medicine," JMSNJ, Vol 73 (Jan 1976).
46"The Northern Medical Dept 1776-1777," Bull Ft Ticonderoga Mus,Vol 14 (Winter 1982).
47"Our First Woman Dermatologist," [Eva Brodkin, MD], NJ Med, Vol 85 (May 1988).
48"The Physician as Collector," AMNJ Bull, Vol 6 (Sept 1960). Includes typescript.
49"The Physician and the Book in Early America, 1720-1820," n.d. unpub typescript, 9pp.
50"The Physician and the Book in Early America, 1720-1820," read at the Coll Phys Phila, Apr 17, 1985. Printed & distributed at a program on "Bibliophilia and Medical History" by the MHSNJ, Princeton, May 19,1992.
51"Psychosomatic Factors in Tension Dermatitis," JMSNJ, Vol 53 (Jan 1956).
52"Rebels and Disease: New York Campaign of 1776," AMNJ Bull, Vol 13 (June 1967). Includes galley proof.
53"The Tilton Affair," JAMA, Vol 236 (July 5, 1976).
Subject Files:
54Acad of Med of NJ, 1978-84.
55Acad of Med of NJ. Continuing Education for Physicians, 1970.
56American Academy of Dermatology. Membership certificate, 1939.2 copies.
57American Academy of Dermatology. Citation, 1989.
58American Board of Dermatology & Syphology. Board Certification, Dec 12, 1941.
59Bookplate Design, n.d.
60Class of 1981, CMDNJ-NJMS. Citation, Apr 27, 1978.
61Clossy, Samuel MD. Research File, 1955-66.
62Columbia College. Distinguished Classmate Award, Dec 15, 1977.
63Columbia University. Master of Arts Diploma, Feb 23, 1949.
64Columbia University. Doctor of Philosophty Diploma,Oct 9, 1968.
65Columbia University. Presidential Citation for Distinction and Commencement Program, May 15, 1974.
66Funk & Wagnalls, Inc. Citation,1976.
67Grolier Club. Report on the Committee on Small Exhibitions, 1971.
68History of Medicine Lecture Notes, SHCMD, 1956 [1st series of HOM lectures given in NJ].
69International Society of Tropical Dermatology. Membership certificate, Sept 1960.
70Le Grand Cordon de Chevalier de l'Ordre des Noctambules. Honorary diploma, n.d.
71Maurus of Salerno, Twelfth-Century "Optimus Physicus...", [1972]. Book reviews of MHS's transcription & translation.
72Medical Society of New Jersey. Golden Merit Award, May 6, 1978.
73The Morris H. Saffron Collection on Historical Medicine, A Short Title Catalog, Newark:CMDNJ,1980, 70pp.
74National Board of Medical Examiners. Diploma, 7/10/1929.
75New Jersey Academy of Science. Fellow certificate, 4/19/1967.
76New Jersey American Revolution Bicentennial Celebration Commission. Citation, 1976.
77NJ Med, Vol 84 (May 1987).
78New Jersey State Medical License, Sept 14, 1929.
79New York State Medical License, Aug 13, 1954.
80Newspaper articles, misc. establishing Saffron Collection, CMDNJ, Oct 1978-Feb 1979.
81Speech. "...at Dedication...Union of the Library of the Academy...with Library CMDNJ," Sept 21, 1972. 2 copies.
82Speech. "...at Dedication of... Saffron Collection...," Oct 18, 1978. 2 copies.
83Surgeon to Washington: Dr. John Cochran 1730-1807 (1977). Book reviews of MHS's book.
84University of Maryland. Doctor of Medicine diploma, 6/2/1928.
85UMDNJ-NJMS. Faculty appointment as Visiting Professor Emeritus, July 27, 1987.
86UMDNJ-RWJMS.Citation, 2/27/1992.
87Miscellany, 1924-1984, n.d.
88Academy of Medicine of NJ. Honorary Fellow plaque, 5/27/81.[oversize]

Rearranged and Inventoried by:

Lois R. Densky-Wolff
Archivist, UMDNJ
August 12, 1992

Page Revised: 3/13/01

For reference service and information contact:
Robert Vietrogoski
Special Collections
FAX 973-972-7474