Skip to main content
COLLECTION Identifier: H MS c68

George V. Smith and Olive W. Smith papers

Overview

Contains mostly research material, reflecting Olive and George Smith's studies on diseases of the human reproductive organs, such as metastasizing breast cancer, and work on urinary estrogens among other concerns. Also includes their correspondence with colleagues, pharmaceutical firms, etc. Other material includes Olive Smith's Vassar alumnae papers.

Dates

  • 1917, 1928-1976, 1982 (inclusive).

Creator

Language of Materials

Records are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Access requires advance notice. Access to Harvard University records is restricted for 50 years from the date of creation. These restrictions are noted where they appear in Series IV. Access to personal and patient information is restricted for 80 years from the date of creation. These restrictions appear in Series II, Subseries B. Researchers may apply for access to restricted records. Consult Public Services for further information.

The papers are stored offsite. Researchers are advised to contact Public Services for more information concerning retrieval of material.

Conditions Governing Use

The Harvard Medical Library does not hold copyright on all materials in the collection. Researchers are responsible for identifying and contacting any third-party copyright holders for permission to reproduce or publish. For more information on the Center's use, publication, and reproduction policies, view our Reproductions and Use Policy.

Extent

5 boxes
Contains mostly research material, reflecting Olive and George Smith's studies on diseases of the human reproductive organs, such as metastasizing breast cancer, and work on urinary estrogens among other concerns. Also includes their correspondence with colleagues, pharmaceutical firms, etc.; George Smith's departmental correspondence about faculty appointments at the Harvard Medical School (especially about filling the Richardson Professorship), and other subjects; and memoranda and correspondence mostly about research matters at the Fearing Research Laboratory, Free Hospital for Women. Research notes; laboratory notebooks, 1964-1971; charts on urinary estrogens; drafts of papers and articles (some unpublished), the laboratory's collected reprints, and copies of seminar lectures and public talks document the Smiths' research, publishing, and lecturing activities. Other material includes Olive Smith's Vassar alumnae papers.

Materials entirely in English.

Biographical Notes

George Van Siclen Smith (1900-1984) and Olive Watkins Smith (1901-1983) were personal and professional partners during their more than fifty years spent in research and patient care. Their work at the Fearing Research Laboratory and the Free Hospital for Women in Boston was centered on diseases of the female reproductive organs and the endocrinology of the menstrual cycle and pregnancy. They spent many years developing hormonal therapies to treat menstrual dysfunctions, complications of pregnancy, and cancers of the breast and reproductive organs. Their endocrinological investigations were also utilized by scientists in developing oral contraceptives and fertility drugs.

George V. Smith was born in New York City, and attended Phillips Andover Academy and Harvard University. Graduating with an A.B. in 1921, he entered Harvard Medical School the same year, and began working as a house officer at the Free Hospital for Women by 1923. He held various faculty positions at the Medical School, culminating in his appointment as head of the Gynecology Division in 1947. The Free Hospital for Women was his lifetime affiliation, and there he assumed various responsibilities, finally becoming Chief of Staff.

Olive W. Smith was born in Worcester, Mass., and attended Vassar College, graduating in 1923. The daughter of a surgeon who did not believe that women should attend medical school, Olive Smith became the first woman to obtain a doctorate in Biochemistry from the Division of Medical Sciences at Harvard Medical School in 1928. In 1929, she was hired by George V. Smith as a biochemist at the Fearing Research Laboratory, and they married the following year. She was both a Research Associate and an Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at Harvard Medical School, and also served on the Committee on Admissions for three years. She assumed directorship of the Fearing Research Laboratory from 1946 to 1960, and again from 1970 to 1980, after which time the facility closed.

Series and Subseries in the Collection

  1. I. General Correspondence, 1930-1976, undated
  2. ___A. George V. Smith Correspondence, 1930-1976, undated
  3. ______ 1. Individual and Corporate Correspondence, 1930-1976
  4. ______ 2. Letters of Recommendation, 1950s
  5. ______ 3. Alphabetical Correspondence, undated
  6. ___B. Olive W. Smith Correspondence, 1942-1970, undated
  7. ______ 1. Individual and Corporate Correspondence, 1942-1970
  8. ______ 2. Alphabetical Correspondence, undated
  9. ___C. George V. Smith and Olive W. Smith Correspondence, 1940-1975, undated
  10. ______ 1. Individual and Corporate Correspondence, 1940-1975
  11. ______ 2. Alphabetical Correspondence, undated
  12. II. Hormone Therapies Records, 1934-1959, 1961, 1967, undated
  13. ___A. Correspondence, 1934-1959, 1961, 1967, undated
  14. ______1. George V. Smith Correspondence, 1934-1948, 1961, undated
  15. _________ a. Individual Correspondence, 1934-1948, 1961
  16. _________ b. Alphabetical Correspondence, undated
  17. ______2. Olive W. Smith Correspondence, 1944-1957, 1967, undated
  18. _________ a. Individual Correspondence, 1944-1957, 1967, undated
  19. _________ b. Alphabetical Correspondence, undated
  20. ______3. George V. Smith and Olive W. Smith Correspondence, 1940-1959, undated
  21. _________ a. Individual and Corporate Correspondence, 1940-1959
  22. _________ b. Alphabetical Correspondence, undated
  23. ___ B. Patient Records, 1954, undated
  24. ___C. Lectures and Talks, 1946-1953
  25. ______ 1. George V. Smith Lectures and Talks, 1953
  26. ______ 2. Olive W. Smith Lectures and Talks, 1946-1953
  27. ______ 3. George V. Smith and Olive W. Smith Lectures and Talks, 1947, 1949, 1953
  28. ___ D. Research Data and Reports, 1939, 1945, 1946, 1952, 1956, undated
  29. III. Fearing Research Laboratory Records, 1928-1970, undated
  30. ___ A. Research Records, 1928-1970
  31. ___ B. Research Reports and Notebooks, 1950s, 1957, 1966-1970
  32. ___ C. Related Laboratory Records, undated
  33. IV. Harvard Medical School Records, 1946-1947, 1951, 1954, 1957-1958, 1962-1969, 1974, undated
  34. ___A. George V. Smith Records, 1946, 1954, 1957-1958, 1962-1969, 1974, undated
  35. ______ 1. Course and Conference Records, 1946, 1962-1966, 1969
  36. ______ 2. Correspondence and Related Records, 1946-1947, 1951, 1954, 1974
  37. ______ 3. Chronological Related Records, undated
  38. ___ B. Olive W. Smith Records, 1949-1968
  39. V. Talks, Lectures, and Speeches, 1931-1966, 1968, 1974
  40. ___ A. George V. Smith Talks, Lectures, and Speeches, 1933-1961
  41. ___ B. Olive W. Smith Talks, Lectures, and Speeches, 1935-1966, 1974
  42. ___ C. George V. Smith and Olive W. Smith Talks, Lectures, and Speeches, 1931, 1935, 1955, 1968
  43. VI. Writings, 1936, 1943-1950, 1964, 1973
  44. ___ A. George V. Smith Writings, 1943, undated
  45. ___ B. Olive W. Smith Writings, 1943-1969,
  46. ___ C. George V. and Olive W. Smith Writings, 1936, 1944-1950, 1964, 1973
  47. VII. Personal and Biographical Records, 1917, 1930s-1961, 1963, 1967, 1968, 1970, 1975, 1982, undated
  48. ___ A. George V. Smith Personal Records, 1917, 1941-1961, 1967, 1968, 1970, 1975, 1982, undated
  49. ___ B. Olive W. Smith Personal Records, 1930s-1951, 1963, 1967

Processing Information

Processed by Jennifer Pelose and SPI, July 2007.

This finding aid has been posted as a product of converting a heritage finding aid to an electronic format for the purpose of facilitating collection access. Researchers should be aware that this finding aid has not been revised to meet current Center for the History of Medicine descriptive practices, nor nationally promulgated content standards. Please report any difficulties using this guide to Public Services
Link to catalog
Title
Smith, George Van Siclen, 1900- and Smith, Olive Watkins, 1901-1983. Papers, 1917, 1928-1976, 1982, Finding Aid.
Author
Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine. Center for the History of Medicine.
EAD ID
med00084

Repository Details

Part of the Center for the History of Medicine (Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine) Repository

Contact:
10 Shattuck Street
Boston MA 02115
(617) 432-2170