Fonds UA-12 - Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine fonds

General material designation

  • Textual record

Parallel title

Other title information

Title statements of responsibility

Title notes

Level of description


Reference code


Edition area

Edition statement

Edition statement of responsibility

Class of material specific details area

Statement of scale (cartographic)

Statement of projection (cartographic)

Statement of coordinates (cartographic)

Statement of scale (architectural)

Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


Physical description area

Physical description

30 m of textual records

Publisher's series area

Title proper of publisher's series

Parallel titles of publisher's series

Other title information of publisher's series

Statement of responsibility relating to publisher's series

Numbering within publisher's series

Note on publisher's series

Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Dalhousie Medical School is an internationally-recognized faculty in undergraduate, postgraduate and continuing medical education. The only medical school in the Maritime provinces, it is closely affiliated with the provincial healthcare systems in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, and is affiliated with over one hundred teaching sites, including nine teaching hospitals.

The Dalhousie College Act, ratified in 1863, stipulated the establishment of a medical faculty; with the support of the premier and the provincially-funded Halifax Hospital, the Faculty of Medicine opened in 1868, half a century after the university's founding, and the fifth medical school in Canada, preceded by McGill (1842), Queens (1854), Laval (1823) and Toronto (1843).

The initial class of 14 students was taught by a volunteer faculty of Halifax physicians under the leadership of Dr. Alexander P. Reid. Primary subjects only were offered, and students transferred to McGill, Harvard or New York to complete their training; by 1870 a full program was available and in 1872 the first class graduated from Dalhousie’s Faculty of Medicine. In 1873 financial difficulties forced the school’s closure and two years later the independent Halifax Medical College was formed, with Dr. Reid as president. After an ambiguous affiliation with the college, in 1889 Dalhousie’s Faculty of Medicine was re-established, with the Halifax Medical College remaining as the teaching body while the Faculty of Medicine took over the role of examining body.

With the support of the Carnegie Foundation, the medical school was reorganized; in 1911 the Halifax Medical School was fully reintegrated into the university, with a full-time pre-clinical teaching staff and strict entrance requirements. In the early 1920s further grants from the Carnegie and Rockefeller foundations enabled the construction of the Dalhousie Public Health Clinic and the Medical Sciences Building, as well as the expansion of the Pathology Institute. In 1925 the school obtained an A1 accreditation from the American Medical Association.

Financial challenges throughout the 1930s and 1940s were alleviated by contributions from the provincial governments of Newfoundland, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, and during this period the faculty established the first continuing medical education program in Canada. In 1967 the Sir Charles Tupper Medical Building was completed, housing the W.K. Kellogg Health Sciences Library, several medical science faculties, and facilities for teaching and research.

Custodial history

The majority of material was transferred to the University Archives from storage in the Tupper Building in two phases. The first on April 11 and August 2, 1983 (Accession Nos: MS-1 33-83, 35-83, 58-83). The second phase occurred on April 15, 1985 (Accession No. MS-1 26-85). On June 15 1993, minutes from 1867-1875 and listings of Interns 1930-1936 (Accession No. MS-1 26-93) were relocated to the Archives. The acquisition of Dalhousie Medical Alumni Association files in 1994 (Accession No. MS-13 3-94) provided access to additional Dean's Office correspondence. Further material including correspondence from 1907, Faculty Council and Departmental Head Meeting minutes was moved to the Archives on September 15, 1998 (Accession No. MS-1 63-98). Clinical Conference video recordings from the Department of Psychiatry were donated by the Health Sciences Library at Nova Scotia Hospital in 2022 (2022-021). Further accruals are expected.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of records that document the administrative and operational activities of the Faculty of Medicine. These include general correspondence, minutes (faculty and departmental), financial records, reports, statistics, administrative relationships, program information, course materials, examination records, newspaper clippings, memorabilia, photographs as well as provide evidence of relationships with outside organizations.

Principally, the material is composed of records from the Dean's Office of the Faculty of Medicine. To facilitate access to the collection the materials have been organized into 17 different series.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition


Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Finding aids

Associated materials

Material associated with the fonds includes the private papers of Dr. C.B. Stewart (MS-13-61) (former Dean of the Faculty of Medicine), Dalhousie Medical Student's Society (MS-13-59), Halifax Medical College (MS-13-5), Medical Society of Nova Scotia (MS-13-55/Accession No. 13-85), Dr. H.B. Atlee (MS-13), Dr. Angus E. Murray (MS-13), Dr. John Stewart (MS-13-39), and Dr. R.C. Dickson (former Head of the Department of Medicine). An alphabetical listing of the University's private medical archives material can be found by accessing the following URL: ../ead/unms13.htm.

Related materials


General note

Preferred citation: [Identification of item], Faculty of Medicine of Dalhousie University fonds, UA-12, Box [box number], Folder [folder number], Dalhousie University Archives and Special Collections, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Alternative identifier(s)

Standard number area

Standard number

Access points

Name access points

Accession area