News from the Libraries

News from the Libraries

Books from the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library will be digitized for inclusion in The Portal to Texas History

Drawing of Chaparral (Roadrunner) with LizardThe Libraries have received a “Rescuing Texas History” mini-project grant to pay for the digitization of thirteen historical books from the P. I. Nixon Medical Historical Library collection.  The books will be digitized by the University of North Texas Libraries’ Digital Project Unit and included in The Portal to Texas History.

The Portal to Texas History is an Internet gateway to Texas history materials created and maintained by the University of North Texas Libraries.  The portal features unique collections of materials dating from prehistory to the present day, from Texas libraries, museums, archives, historical societies, genealogical societies, and private family collections.  The contents include images, text, and sound and video recordings and are made publicly available by the collection-holding partners for use in research, teaching, and private study.

The books sent to the Portal from the Nixon collection focus on Texas history, climate, and culture.  They include:

  • The Climate of Texas, published in 1894 by Isaac Monroe Cline. This book describes the effects of climate and weather changes in causing diseases and deaths.
  • Queer Quaint Old San Antonio: Its Climate in Throat and Lung Diseases, published in 1895 by C. E. Fisher
  • San Antonio de Bexar: a Guide and History, written in 1890 by William Corner
  • Texas Surgeon, an Autobiography, by D. T. Atkinson, a surgeon born in 1874 who practiced in rural Texas and the Oklahoma Indian country before moving to Dallas and San Antonio.  Published in 1958.
  • A  Frontier Doctor, by H. F. Hoyt, published in 1929 and describing the experiences and  adventures of his pioneering days.  Hoyt was the first physician to practice medicine in the Texas Panhandle.
  • Texas Nature Observations and Reminiscences, Dr. Rudolph Menger’s observations and reminiscences on Texas insect and animal life, published in 1913.  Contains numerous photo-micrographs taken by the author.
  • The Menace: An Exposition of Quackery Nostrum Exploitation and Reminiscences of a Country Doctor,  a concise history written by Charles Dixon in 1914 of the work involved in ridding Bexar county of quacks and nostrum exploiters.
  • Notes on the Newer Remedies, 2nd ed.,  a book by David Cerna, written in 1894 on the therapeutic applications of various remedies
  • An account of the early history of surgery in Texas, Presidential address presented by A. Singleton to the Texas Surgical Society in October 1932
  • A Treatise on the Eclectic Southern Practice of Medicine,  written by J. Cam Massie in 1854 to describe the treatment of diseases as specially adapted to the peculiar manner in which diseases manifested themselves in Texas

Med-Ed students visit the Ramirez Library

Med-Ed Students at the Ramirez Library60 Med-Ed students spent the day at the Regional Academic Health Center on June 15th.  Six students were awarded Honorary Medical Librarian certificates for their outstanding performance in a health resources scavenger hunt held at the Ramirez Library.

In this photo:  Monica Tovar (staff), Juan Alarcon, Kathy Carter (staff), Alyssa Torres, Valentin Moreno, Samantha Hooper, Kelly Lee, and Jo Mario Rivera.

What We’re reading this summer: How Lincoln Learned to Read

Katie Prentice, Head of Education and Information Services, enjoyed How Lincoln Learned to Read:  This book compiles the stories of 12 individuals from American history and the educations that shaped their futures.  Wolff begins with Benjamin Franklin, moves chronologically through the years to Abigail Adams and Sojourner Truth, and takes us all the way to Elvis Presley.  Each profile draws on the character’s own writing, including letters and diaries, to closely examine what a “good” education might include.  The key to all 12 individuals is that they managed to learn (both formally and informally) what they needed to know to get ahead in life.  This brief history of American education is relevant to everyone involved in education.

What we’re reading this summer: The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains

Book: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains, by Nicholas CarrSusan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian, is reading The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains, by Nicholas Carr:  A  master of attention-getting titles (he was the author of a 2008 Atlantic article that opened with the provocative question, ‘Is Google Making Us Stupid?) Nicholas Carr is wide-ranging, generous with examples, and nimble in his thinking about how and why the digitally-nurtured mind is different from ‘the linear, literary mind’ that has ruled the world for most of the past 500 years.  He draws on neurobiology, linguistics, and history to show how digital writing is reshaping the habits of the minds that use it.

What we’re reading this summer: Hamlet’s Blackberry: A Practical Philosophy for Building a Good Life in the Digital Age, by William Powers

Book Cover: Hamlet's BlackberryAnother book to consider while trying to make peace with your gadgets.

News from The Libraries – July 2010

A printable pdf version is also available.

Suggestions, questions, and comments should be directed to

News from the UT Health Science Center Libraries is published at the beginning of each month to highlight the programs, services and resources offered by The Libraries.
Rajia Tobia, Executive Director of Libraries
Susan Hunnicutt, Editor
Kelley Minars, Web Editor

Harry Potter’s World at the Briscoe Library: Save the Date!

Renaissance Healers

The UT Health Science Center Libraries are pleased to announce that Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine will open in the Briscoe Library in October 2010. The traveling exhibit, produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, and coordinated by the American Library Association, uses materials from the historical collections of the National Library of Medicine to explore Harry Potter’s world and its roots in Renaissance traditions.

The study of Renaissance science and medicine adds a fascinating dimension to the Harry Potter stories for both children and adults. For example, alchemist Nicolas Flamel, who is fictionally featured in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, was a real 15th-century scholar whose experiments with metals influenced the development of modern chemistry.

A series of programs is being planned in conjunction with the exhibit, which will be in the Briscoe Library from October 11 to November 6, 2010. Please add these dates to your calendar. Details will be provided closer to the events. For more information contact Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian,

Event Dates

Opening Event and Reception:

Renaissance Science and the Quest for Immortality: Lessons from Albus Dumbledore, Nicolas Flamel, and Isaac Newton

C. Mackenzie Brown, Ph.D.
Jennie Farris Railey King Professor in Religion, Department of Religion, Trinity University
October 11, 2010. 5 pm – 7pm
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

Potent Potions and Healing Herbs: Medicinal Practices of the Renaissance

Charlene M. Moore, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, UT Health Science Center
October 19, 2010. 12 noon – pm
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

A Little Muggle Magic: The Wisdom of Harry Potter for Families

Pat Thompson, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer in History, University of Texas at San Antonio
October 23, 2010, 10am – 11:30am
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

Friends of the P.I. Nixon Annual Dinner and Presentation:

Magic and Monsters in the Stacks: How Harry Potter Came to the National Library of Medicine

Stephen J. Greenberg, Ph.D.
Coodinator of Public Services – History of Medicine Division, Nationl Library of Medicine
November 1, 2010. 6:30pm – 9pm
Double Tree Hotel

Living Dangerously: Doctors Adrift in the Dark Ages

Richard F. Ludueña, Ph.D.
Distinguished Teaching Professor, Department of Biochemistry, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio
November 6, 2010. 2pm – 3pm
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

Library Classes for May

Why Twitter? Monday, May 12, Noon to 1pm in the Howe Conference Room

All classes are free and open to all. Advance registration is appreciated but not required. If you would like to request a class or schedule a consult at any HSC campus, please contact the library at (210) 567-2450 or email

If you would like to request a special class or orientation for your department or group at other days/times, please contact us!

To register for a class or to read class descriptions, visit the online class schedule.

When you register for a library class, your registration confirmation email now includes a file that you can save as an appointment into your electronic calendar.

Briscoe Library, Long Campus – San Antonio

  • Ovid Tips & Tricks: Getting Started with MEDLINE: Tuesday, May 11, 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m., LIB 2.011
  • Technology Brownbag: Why Twitter?: Wednesday, May 12, 12 noon – 1:00 p.m., Howe Conference Room
  • Introduction to PubMed: Wednesday, May 12, 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., LIB 2.011
  • Introduction to EndNote: Thursday, May 13, 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m., LIB 2.011
  • Introduction to RefWorks: Wednesday, May 19, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., LIB 2.011
  • Using EBSCO CINAHL to Locate Nursing & Allied Health Information: Thursday, May 20, 2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m., LIB 2.011

Ramirez Library, RAHC – Harlingen

  • Technology Brownbag: Bridging the Distance- Online Meeting Software: May 6, 12 noon – 1:00 p.m., 1.132

Katie Prentice

Head of Education and Information Services

The One Community/One Book selection for 2010 is The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

The UT Health Science Center Libraries are pleased to announce that The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot is the One Community/One Book selection for 2010.  One Community/One Book 2010 is planned to coincide with the Center for Medical Humanities & Ethics’ 2010 Frank Bryant, Jr., M.D. Memorial Lecture.   Rebecca Skloot will be the featured speaker at that event.

The Libraries will host or support a series of discussion opportunities in September and early October, leading up to the Bryant Lecture, which will take place on October 15, 2010.

In The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Rebecca Skloot provides detailed portraits of the people who played a role in, or whose lives were impacted by, the discovery of HeLa cells:  Henrietta Lacks, her physicians, medical research teams,  and her children.  Skloot  explores ethical issues that emerge from the interplay of race and poverty in one of the most important science stories of the 20th century.

This is the third One Community/One Book project on the UT Health Science Center campuses;  previous books were Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, A Man Who Would Cure the World by Tracy Kidder (2008) and Final Exam: A Surgeon’s Reflections on Mortality (2009), by Pauline W. Chen, M.D.

Copies of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks are available at the Briscoe, Downtown, Ramirez and Laredo libraries, and at the Jesse H. Jones Comprehensive Research Library at Texas Research Park:  Call number QU 300 S628i 2010.  Also, beginning in May, the UT Health Science Center Bookstore will have copies of the book, which can be purchased at a 25% discount off the list price.

Susan Hunnicutt

Special Projects Librarian

Author Julie K. Brown will speak about international expositions and their impact on American medical practices from 1876-1904

Julie K. Brown

Wednesday, April 7
Noon to 1:00 p.m.
Howe Conference Room, Briscoe Library

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries international expositions transmitted a new culture of visibility that merged information, entertainment and commerce, and provided a unique opportunity for the public to become aware not only of social and technological advances, but also of emerging public health concerns. This is the topic of Julie K. Brown’s book Health and Medicine on Display: International Expositions in the United States, 1876-1904.

At noon on Wednesday, April 7, Dr. Julie K. Brown, a research associate at the National Museum of American History / Department of Medicine, Science and Society at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., will examine the Philadelphia, Chicago, Buffalo and St. Louis world’s fairs from a medical historical perspective and describe their impact on applied health and medical practice in America.

Dr. Brown is currently serving as president of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library at the UT Health Science Center. In addition to Health and Medicine on Display, her publications include Making Culture Visible (2001) and Contesting Images: Photography and the World’s Columbian Exposition (1994). She is also a faculty associate at the Center for Medical Humanities & Ethics.