David C. Sabiston Papers, 1887-2010

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Summary

Creator:
Sabiston, David C., 1924-2009. and Sabiston, David C., 1924-2009.
Abstract:
Contains the personal and professional papers of David C. Sabiston Jr. (1924-2009), surgeon and chair of the Department of Surgery at Duke University from 1964 to 1994. Types of materials include personal and professional correspondence, memorabilia, scrapbooks, correspondence, clippings, printed materials, DVDs, CDs, floppy disks, VHS cassettes, certificates, research materials, committee minutes, reports, manuscript materials, reports, departmental lectures, presentations and talks, budgets, evaluations, administrative documents, planning documents, notes, photographs, slides, audiotapes, plaques, gowns, hoods, and robes. Major correspondents include Del Stickel, Donald Silver, J. Leonard Goldner, James F. Glenn, Will Camp Sealy, Samuel A. Wells Jr., and Kenneth Pickrell. Materials range in date from 1887 to 2010, with the bulk starting in 1920.
Extent:
116.3 Linear Feet (71 cartons, 6 flat boxes, 14 slides boxes, 2 card boxes, 1 map folder, 2 manuscript boxes, 1 cassette tape box) 1 oversized folder, 3 artifacts, and 2 robes
Language:
English
Collection ID:
MC.0081

Background

Scope and content:

Contains materials pertaining to the career of David C. Sabiston Jr. as a surgeon, including both his time at Johns Hopkins, from 1957 to 1959, and at Duke University, from 1964 through 2000. Types of materials include personal and professional correspondence, clippings, printed materials, committee minutes, reports, departmental lectures, presentations and talks, budgets, evaluations, administrative documents, planning documents, and notes. Also included are manuscript materials for Sabiston's and Barton F. Haynes' book on the history of Department of Surgery, "At the Heart of Medicine: Essays on the Practice of Surgery and Surgical Education" (2006). Types of audiovisual material contained in the collection include photographs, slides, surgery films, surgery grand round films, CDs, DVDs, VHS cassettes, floppy disks, and interviews with members of the Department of Surgery. Types of artifacts included in the collection are plaques, gowns, hoods, and robes from Johns Hopkins University and an unknown institution. Major correspondents include Barton F. Haynes, Douglas M. Knight, Terry Sanford, Ralph Snyderman, Barnes Woodhall, James F. Glenn, J. Leonard Goldner, Donald Silver, Delford Stickel, and Alfred Blalock. Materials range in date from 1887 to 2010, with the bulk starting in 1920.

Biographical / historical:

David Coston Sabiston Jr. was born in Jacksonville, North Carolina, in 1924 to David C. Sabison Sr. and Frances Marie Sabiston (nee Jackson). In 1944, he received a BS in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (Phi Beta Kappa) and, in 1947, an MD from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (Alpha Omega Alpha). After medical school, he completed his surgical residency under Dr. Alfred Blalock, at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Following his Chief Residency, he spent two years as a Captain in the U.S. Army Marine Corps, posted at Walter Reed Medical Center doing cardiovascular research, where he became interested in physiology and pathophysiology of the coronary arteries. Following his military service, Sabiston returned to Johns Hopkins as an assistant professor of surgery and an investigator in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Within ten years of joining the faculty at Johns Hopkins, he was promoted to professor of surgery.
In 1961, Sabiston received a Fulbright Research Scholarship to study at two prestigious British Institutions: the Hospital for Sick Children (Great Ormond Street) of the University of London and the Nuffield Department of Surgery at Oxford University.
In 1964, Sabiston joined Duke University as James B. Duke Professor of Medicine and chairman of the Department of Surgery. During his tenure at Duke University, he was the principal investigator of a National Institutes of Health Grant supporting an Academic Surgical Research Training Program, which supported the Duke Teaching Scholar in Academic Surgery program. While funded from his first research grant from the National Institutes of Health, a Research Career Development Award, he became the principal investigator of a National Heart Institute grant that was funded continuously for 35 years.
The majority of Sabiston's research concerned the field of cardiothoracic surgery. He made significant contributions to the understanding of coronary artery blood flow, which led to innovative clinical therapies. He also conducted important studies on pulmonary embolisms and defined many of the mechanisms associated with thrombus formation and lysis and pulmonary injury.
Sabiston's abilities as a teacher were appreciated by Duke medical students, who awarded him the Golden Apple Award for excellence in teaching on four separate occasions. He also received the Teacher of the Year Award, given by the graduating senior medical students to the most outstanding educator on the medical faculty, on four separate occasions. Sabiston's other honors, awards, and memberships include: Distinguished Alumnus Award, University of North Carolina, 1978; North Carolina Award in Science Gold Medal (Presented by the Governor of North Carolina), 1978; American Heart Association Scientific Councils' Distinguished Achievement Award, 1983; Michael E. DeBakey Award for Outstanding Achievement, 1984; College Medalist, American College of Chest Physicians, 1987; Honorary Degree, University of Madrid, 1994; Gimbernet Prize, Societat Catalana de Cirurgia, 1994; Honorary Fellowship, European Surgical Association, 1995; The Johns Hopkins University Distinguished Alumnus Award, 1995; Bigelow Medal, Boston Surgical Society, 1996; The Society Prize, the International Surgical Society, 1999; Honorary Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England; Honorary Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh; Honorary Member of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada; Honorary Member of the German Society of Surgery; Honorary Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland; Honorary Member of the Royal Australian College of Surgeons; Honorary Member of the Japanese College of Surgeons; Honorary Member of the French Surgical Association; Honorary Member of the Philippine College of Surgeons; Asociacion de Cirugia del Litoral (Argentina); Brazilian College of Surgeons; Spanish Association of Surgeons; and Columbia Surgical Society.
Sabiston served as the president of several important surgical organizations, including the American Surgical Association, the Society of University Surgeons, the American Association for Thoracic Surgery, the Southern Surgical Association, the Society of Surgical Chairmen, and the American College of Surgeons. He was Chairman of the National Institutes of Health, Surgery Study Section, and Chairman of the Research Committee of the American Heart Association. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences.
From 1966 to 1996, he was the editor of the "Annals of Surgery." He was the editor of two of the leading textbooks in surgery, "The Biological Basis of Modern Surgical Practice," which he edited through fourteen editions, and "Surgery of the Chest," which he co-edited through five editions. He also served on the editorial boards of other surgical journals both in the United States and abroad.
Sabiston retired from his position as chair of the Department of Surgery in 1994 and became director of Duke University Medical Center's International Programs.
Sabiston was married Agnes Sabiston (nee Barden) for 54 years, and they had three daughters: Anne, Agnes, and Sarah. Sabiston died on January 26, 2009.

Acquisition information:
Accession A2004.036 (gift, June 2004), Accession A2014.037 (gift, June 2004), Accession A2004.074 (gift, August 2004), Accession A2014.083 (gift, September 2004), Accession A2005.012 (gift, March 2005), Accession A2006.045 (gift, May 2006), Accession A2007.052 (gift, May 2007), Accession A2008.065 (gift, October 2008), Accession A2018.047 (gift by Allan Kirk, July 2018), Accession A2018.090 (transferred by Justin Barr, November 2018), Accession A2019.052 (transferred by Kimberly Toole, June 2019), Accession A2019.054 (transferred by Justin Barr, June 2019), Accession A2020.048 (gift by Stuart Knechtle, July 2020)
Processing information:

Processed by Archives staff: 2005; encoded by Emily Glenn: May 2005; updated by Dawne E. Howard: April 2007; updated by Dawne Howard Lucas: March 2009; updated by Jessica Roseberry: November 2011; updated by Lindsay Farinella: August 2013; updated by Lucy Waldrop: July 2018, November 2018; updated by Caroline Waller under the supervision of Lucy Waldrop: July 2019, September 2020

Physical location:
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Rules or conventions:
DACS

Contents

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Restrictions:

This collection may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals or IRB approval may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which Duke University assumes no responsibility.
Contains Medical Center Administrative records. These include records of the officers of the University, as defined in the Bylaws, the deans of schools and colleges, and departments, institutes, and other offices as designated by the President. For a period of twenty-five years from the origin of the material, permission in writing from the director of the office of record and the Medical Center Archivist is required for use. After twenty-five years, records that have been processed may be consulted with the permission of the Medical Center Archivist. (Issued by the Office of the Chancellor, December 1, 1975).
The Unprocessed materials Series and the Alfred Blalock Series are restricted and can only be accessed with the permission of the Medical Center Archivist.
Boxes 34 and 98 must be screened for sensitive or confidential materials before being accessed. For further information consult with the Medical Center Archivist.
Surgery Films Subseries must be screened for sensitive or confidential materials before being accessed. For further information consult with the Medical Center Archivist.

Terms of access:

Copyright for Official University records is held by Duke University; all other copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Preferred citation:

[Identification of item], David C. Sabiston Papers, Duke University Medical Center Archives.