Within the Bentley Historical Library collection is, “Poliomyelitis and the Salk Vaccine: A Guide to Resources in the Bentley Historical Library,” a printed (now on-line) guide prepared to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the announcement that the poliomyelitis vaccine developed by Dr. Jonas Salk (University of Pittsburgh) was safe and effective.
The preface to the guide reports on the effectiveness of the polio vaccine and the results of the 1954 vaccine field trials in which more than 1.8 million elementary school children took part. These results were rigorously evaluated at the University of Michigan Polio Evaluation Center by Dr. Thomas Francis of the School of Public Health. The Bentley Historical Library and the Historical Center for the Health Sciences (now the Center for the History of Medicine), with support from the Southeast Michigan Chapter of the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, collaborated to commemorate this important event. Narrative overviews of archival and manuscript holdings relating to polio and the testing of the Salk vaccine are also found here, as well as news films relating to the polio vaccine announcement, including Dr. Salk’s press conferences. In addition to original content, several new collections and record groups pertaining to polio have been received.
Bentley Historical Library
University of Michigan
1150 Beal Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2113