Category: Partners

Last week’s visitors from Seoul National University prompted several conversations with retired faculty either involved with the original partnership or international programs.

First, I had the opportunity to meet Dr. Neal Gault, former Dean of the Medical School. Dr. Gault lived in Korea with his family for two years. Dr. Gault and other university faculty acted as program supervisors at SNU during the reconstruction of the medical school and faculty training.

I also had the chance to meet Dr. John Arnold, former Head of Surgery and Radiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Arnold was the only CVM faculty member to stay in Korea during the partnership. He and his family were on site from 1960-1961. He described his work as modernizing the training of graduates and supporting the work of the younger faculty. Dr. Arnold also discussed his role as a faculty consultant in Columbia in 1963.

Although not a participant in the SNU partnership, I also met with Dr. Stanley Diesch, a retired faculty member of the College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Diesch served as director for the CVM’s international programs. In addition to his international work, Dr. Diesch was a founding member and former director of CENSHARE (Center for the Study of Human Animal Relationships and Environments) housed in the School of Public Health. Dr. Diesch also served as the Head of Food Hygiene and Veterinary Public Health.

All of the above conversations were enlightening and acted as a starting point for new collection leads.


In the 1950s and 1960s the University of Minnesota partnered with Seoul National University in a cooperative relationship to develop educational and research programs in agriculture, the medical sciences, and engineering. The effort allowed University of Minnesota faculty and civil service staff to learn from their counterparts in Korea and assisted in SNU’s reconstruction after the war as an institution and as a source of intellectual labor to strengthen Korea’s post-war economy.

Recently, a cooperative partnership between the SNU Archives and the U of M Archives has worked to identify materials held by the two institutions documenting the cooperative arrangement. Currently, researchers from SNU are mining the materials at the U of M to locate unique items not known or held by SNU.

This is an opportune time to locate and identify individuals in the AHC that have a connection to the original partnership or departments and offices that may still have material related to the University’s work with SNU. The Medical School, School of Nursing, and Veterinary Medicine were all involved in the cooperative.

I have already noted that the small sampling of John Arnold’s papers have some correspondence resulting from the partnership. The School of Nursing has a binder of related documents as well. Dr. Neal Gault, former dean of the Medical School, was also a participant. We are working to identify additional individuals and I hope the current interest in the SNU partnership will generate collection leads and accessions for the AHC archives project.


books in the MVHM collectionLast night I attended the board meeting for the Minnesota Veterinary Historical Museum. The museum is located on the St. Paul campus of the University of Minnesota and contains a range of materials from books, to surgical instruments, to giant petrified hairballs.

It was an opportunity for me to discuss the archives project and connect with the board members, many of whom are former faculty of the College of Veterinary Medicine. They invited me to attend future meetings and I offered a tour of the archives in return. Notable board members include Dr. Walter Mackey, a member of the first entering class of 1947, and Dr. Bee Hanlon, one of the first two women to enter the program in 1948. Both later became faculty members at the College.

Ideally, this connection will allow the MVHM and the archives project to help each other. If I locate materials more suited for a museum collection, I will be able to pass them along. In the same manner, I can help them better identify material that is appropriate for the archives to manage and arrange for acquisition or transfer.

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