Frontiers of Medicine: A History of Medical Education and Research at the University of Alberta

By Elise A. Corbet | Go to book overview

Introduction

Who is responsible for the establishment of a faculty of medicine at this university, and why did the school become necessary? Frankly we are not sure. Those who have been questioned have each a different answer. All who were most intimately concerned are now alive and it is for future students (when the pioneers are safely dead) to determine to whom credit is due.

THUS BEGAN a history of the Medical Students' Club, written in 1929 by J. M. Large, D. G. Revell and E. F. Cain, 1 and now held in the archives of the University of Alberta. This manuscript, however, goes on to provide a good part of the answer:

It is also significant that the original plans of the university made ample provision for a medical school, its laboratories, hospital and clinics. This could have been done only by one who had early foreseen the necessity for a faculty of medicine. It is impossible in any inquiry into the early days of this university to forget the predominant, and dominant, part played by its first president.

Now that "the pioneers are safely dead," the truth of the last sentence remains. During the twenty years that Henry Marshall Tory presided over the University of Alberta, he did indeed control all aspects of the institution and his word was law. The University of Alberta opened its

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