Society News; Society Loss; Society Fosters an “Unexpected” Panel Proposal; Society Dues-Donation Season

This blog is “sponsored” by the Society for the History of Navy Medicine. As such, it’s time for a Society advertisement. Here goes:

Today I received in the mail a packet with this note:

“From the Desk of Captain Charles Todd Creekman Jr., USN, (RET), Executive Director, Naval Historical Foundation, 7 Feb 2012
Dear Tom,
Here is your copy of the Pray journal. I’m delivering it to Jan Herman on 15 Feb, per our agreement. Thanks again for your Foundation’s generous donation to help acquire the journal! Best regards, Todd”

-and a copy of this letter:

Naval Historical Foundation
Preservation, Education and Commemoration of Naval History
7 February 2012
Office of the Medical Historian
Bureau of Medicine and surgery
2300 E St NW
Washington DC  20372
Dear Mr [Jan] Herman,
In accordance with the provisions of current OPNAV and SECNAV instructions governing acceptance of gifts, the Naval Historical Foundation hereby donates to the Office of the Medical Historian the journal of a Civil War naval surgeon, valued at $4,500.00. This hand-written, 154-page journal, authored by Acting Assistant Surgeon Ezra Pray, details is Navy appointment and service in the US Bark Fernandina from September 1861 through April 1862 when that ship was assigned to the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron of the Union Navy.
We look forward to partnering with you to publicize the acquisition and donation of tis unique document in the midst of the national commemoration of the sesquicentennial of the Civil War.
//s// Todd Creekman
Charles T. Creekman, Jr.
Captain, USN, (Ret.)
Executive Director

This journal will be available for review and perusal after the Historian Office completes its BRAC-required move from Foggy Bottom to Falls Church, VA, probably by mid-to late-2012.


We were saddened to learn, by way of the Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery publication The Grog of the passing of Society member Vice Admiral James Zimble in December 2011. VADM Zimble, former Surgeon General of the Navy and, later, President of the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, was an early member and supporter of the Society. We are sorry for his loss, and offer our sincere condolences to his family.


A Society post to the listserv H-Sci-Med-Tech last month indicating a welcoming attitude from the American Historical Association concerning submissions on military history led to an inquiry from a scholar from Canada about proposing a panel on naval medicine. I circulated this inquiry to our membership. Society member John Beeler took the conn and the helm, and in very short order assembled the scholars and papers to form a panel on maritime health in the Caribbean in the 18th and 19th centuries. The Society’s motto is “Community, Collaboration, Camaraderie”; this was Community and Collaboration made real. We wish for Professor Beeler, Dr Cori Convertito, Professor Harold Langley and (our newest member) Dr Matthew Neufeld every good wish in having their panel accepted!


The Society is funded by the Foundation for the History of Navy Medicine. It is through the generous gifts to the Foundation by Society members and others, that we can support such efforts as the gift of money to the Naval Historical Foundation mentioned above. The Society also sponsors a Graduate Student Travel Grant program which offers $750 grants to students whose papers are accepted for presentation at official Society-sponsored panels. We recently announced a Society Research Grant of $1500 to support work in the history of maritime medicine. Your gift to the Foundation, whether you’re a member or not, will be put to good use! Thank you.

About thomaslsnyder

Retired urological surgeon and navy reservist. Writing the history of the Navy's first hospital on the U S west coast, at Mare Island, California. Founder and Executive Director, the Society for the History of Navy Medicine. Founder and Coordinator of the Albany Base Hospital No. 33 Society, a military affinity group at Albany Medical College, my alma mater. Past Commander of the San Francisco Commandery of the Naval Order of the United States and founder and past Commander of the Naval Order's "virtual" Continental Commandery. Naval Order Ship's Store manager and Assistant Treasurer General. Member of the Solano County (California) Historical Records Commission.
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