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April 10, 1967

The First Medical Buildings In the United States

Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1967;200(2):182. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120150138041

To the Editor:—  Recently, some attention has been given to the priority of the first medical school buildings in the United States; however, Surgeons' Hall has been neglected. In the Nov 21, 1966, issue of The Journal, attention is called to the Fairfield Medical Institution. There seems to be no reason for doubting that the building is "the oldest extant medical school structure in this country."Shaw, in the Jan 23, 1967, issue (199:282), claims that Holden Chapel at Harvard College rightfully should receive "the oldest building kudos." The Harvard Medical School was founded in 1783, and apparently classes were held somewhere in Cambridge, probably in one of the buildings in Harvard Yard. In a book published in 1906 is this statement: "The Medical School was in Holden Chapel in the College Yard, where it remained for more than quarter of a century."1 The year 1784 is given for

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