It is a singular honor and a privilege to have been elected president of the venerable Western Surgical Association and to preside over its 83rd meeting. George Santayana1 stated: "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." To avoid the disaster of delivering a presidential address that has already been given, I have perused all of the presidential addresses presented before the Western Surgical Association. This proved to be a very delightful self-assignment.
The Western Surgical Association was founded in 1891 as the Western Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. As I reviewed the presidential address of William M. Mills,2 our 54th president, I learned some very interesting things about the early years of our association. This organization was the brainchild of a gynecolosist, Milo B. Ward, of Topeka, Kan. At his invitation, 42 charter members appeared at the Copeland Hotel in Topeka in December of
McVay CB. The General Surgery Residency—An Anachronism?. Arch Surg. 1976;111(4):319-322. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1976.01360220015001