St. Mary's School of Nursing Records, 1894-1972

Scope and Content Note

The records of St. Mary's School of Nursing consist of all records extant and document the school from its inception in 1894 through the final year of its operation as a diploma school of nursing in 1969. The collection includes correspondence, administrative and faculty reports, minutes of faculty and student organizations, policy manuals, studies in nursing education, course outlines and class schedules, affiliation agreements, lists of graduates, printed materials, photographs, clippings, and lantern slides.

The collection also contains information on the work of the Sisters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, Milwaukee history, marine hospitals, and a variety of medical, nursing, and related subjects. Information on these topics, and notes and essays on the history of St. Mary's Hospital can be found in the Historical and Miscellaneous File and in the Clippings File. The photographs in the former, which range over a seventy-year period, include pictures of the hospital, the school, administrators, and students in uniform (1896-1969) and participating in various ceremonies.

Insight into administrative detail is to be found in the correspondence with Marillac Seminary and Sister Virginia, and the minutes of the Faculty Organization meetings. The Accreditation File and Affiliation Correspondence are also of interest for administrative inquiry.

The collection has been divided into five main series, preserving where possible the sequence adapted by the originating organization: an Administrative File; Faculty File; Accreditation File; Curriculum File; and Student Records. There are also three smaller categories: Historical and Miscellaneous Materials, Newspaper Clippings, and Lantern Slides.

The ADMINISTRATIVE FILE contains annual and monthly reports of the School of Nursing to the administrator of the hospital (1956-1969); correspondence and reports to Marillac Seminary of the Order of St. Vincent de Paul (1956-1969); orientation and policy manuals (1959-1961); agreements and correspondence regarding affiliations (1925-1967); and a series of reports on “Integrating Mental Health Concepts of Nursing Care,” and other reports and studies concerning psychiatric nursing (1961-1966). There is also one box of budgets, financial reports and purchase orders (1956-1969). Under these several headings, the file is arranged chronologically.

The FACULTY FILE consists of minutes of the Board of Directors, and those of the faculty organization and faculty committee meetings (1934-1964). For the most part, these are in bound volumes, the internal order of which has not been disturbed. Therefore, minutes of the Board of Directors' Meetings and those of various faculty committees are interspersed throughout the Faculty File. The volumes are arranged in chronological order. There are three folders of the minutes of the Social and Health Concepts Committee (1951-1964), and a program for the Student Personnel Services Committee (1964) filed in box thirteen, in order to maintain as strict a chronological arrangement as the primary order of the documents would allow. Also included are the papers, studies, and reports which had been kept in the Faculty Conference Room of the school, and faculty and staff address cards.

The ACCREDITATION FILE contains correspondence, directives, monthly reports, and faculty approval information sent between St. Mary's School of Nursing and the Wisconsin State Department of Nurses (1956-1969); and accreditation correspondence, membership certificates, annual reports, and survey and revisit reports relative to St. Mary's accreditation by the National League for Nursing (1932-1969). Filed here also are student standardized achievement test results (1939-1969); library inventory statistics (1966); self-evaluation reports (1965); and follow-up studies on graduates (1947-1964). The series is arranged in chronological order within these categories.

The CURRICULUM FILE consists of course outlines, class schedules, and syllabi for the classes of 1936 through 1969 arranged chronologically.

The STUDENT RECORDS include minutes of student and student-faculty organizations (1939-1967); and student and alumnae address cards (1886-1964), including deceased graduates, students who resigned, parents of students, and graduates listed both alphabetically and by year of graduation. These materials are arranged chronologically within the categories listed.

The HISTORICAL AND MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS include a copy of the Memorial Volume, St. Mary's School of Nursing, 1894-1969; notes, chronology and essays relating to the history of St. Mary's circa 1939-1960s; lists of graduates, 1896-1967, by year under maiden names; bulletins and handbooks, 1894-1969; graduation announcements and programs, 1903-1968; Annual Reports of St. Mary's Hospital, 1903 and 1914; photographs, circa 1900-1969; items related to the 1972 dedication of a historical marker that celebrated the role St. Mary's School of Nursing once played in the development of nursing education in America; and miscellaneous materials, 1894-1966 and undated.

The NEWSPAPER CLIPPINGS are those retained by the administration pertaining to St. Mary's School of Nursing for the period 1931-1968 and undated; and miscellaneous clippings relating to nurses and nursing education, 1962-1968 and undated. The clippings have been separated according to subject and arranged chronologically within the two divisions.

The fifty LANTERN SLIDES pertain to the history of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul of Paris, France, and of the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's, Emmitsburg, Maryland, and of the evolution of their work in the field of nursing. It is thought these lantern slides may have been shown to students in the school's early years.