New Addition To UVa Nursing Archive

By: Althea Paul
By: Althea Paul

September 28, 2005

UVa's School of Nursing has a new addition to their nursing archives. With a couple swoops of the pen, the gift was official.

"This is very exciting. We are really pleased to have this," said director of the Center for Nursing Historical Inquiry, Arlene Keeling.

The historical collection, donated by the Emergency Nurses Association, documents the first ten years of the organization and has now expanded UVa's nursing archives.

"We chose the University of Virginia because they have a dedicated Center for Nursing Historical Inquiry and that's important cause we are nurses and it seemed very fitting to us that we have our history with other nursing organization's history," said president of the Emergency Nurses Association, Patricia Kunz Howard.

The Center for Nursing Historical Inquiry was started in the early 90's as a way to preserve thousands and thousands of items from all over.

Collections like today's help add on to the center's growing account of the history of nursing - mostly from the 50's onward.

"We have individual papers, we have all of the School of Nursing's papers, including photographs of the students," said associate director of the center, Barbara Brodie.

This history is something that's important to many nurses of the past and present.

"We have been contributing professionally to the growth of healthcare since 1873, and nurses have been on the frontier of many, many efforts," added Brodie.

"Whenever you're challenged to look at where you're going in the future, you really need to also go and look at the past," said emergency nurse, Audrey Snyder.

This past is one that the center believes is worth holding onto.

"It's important because this history needs to be preserved and made available for scholars around the country in healthcare and nursing so that this history is not lost," said Keeling.

The Center for Nursing Historical Inquiry is one of only two facilities in the country that collects these documents and makes them available to others.

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