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Guide to Oral Histories in Medicine and the Health Sciences

National Museum of Health and Medicine
Armed Forces Institute of Pathology


List of Interviewees


  • VERNON ARMBRUSTMACHER, Director of AFIP at time of interview 1993[?]: discusses Berry Program, COL Morrissey, neuromuscular pathology, American Registry of Pathology (ARP), military/civilian relations, DNA Identification lab, Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act of 1988, medical examiner system, board of governors, Medical Museum.
  • WILLIAM R. COWAN, director of AFIP 1980-84: discusses training, flight surgeons, problems at the AFIP in the 70s, Dr. Morrissey, history of the AFIP, 1976 DoD Appropriation Act, Medical Museum, AFIP courses, computer system and medical examiner’s office; Tenerife aircraft disaster, Jonestown incident.
  • ELGIN C. COWART, director of AFIP 1976-1980; curator of Medical Museum 1964-1969: discusses tropical diseases in WWII, the Army Medical Museum’s move to Walter Reed Army Medical Center, General Blumberg, and formation of ARP.
  • CHARLES DAVIS, AFIP, Department of Genitourinary Pathology: discusses drug testing in Vietnam and his work at AFIP.
  • KENNETH EARLE, associate chairman of Center of Advanced Pathology at AFIP (1974-1976; 1977-1979) executive director of ARP (1980-1981): discusses autopsy of Robert Kennedy, civilian consultation cases, Yakolev Collection, neuropathology in communist countries, Uniformed Services University.
  • FRANZ M. ENZINGER, chairman of Department of Soft Tissue Pathology, AFIP (1960-1988): discusses postwar training in Austria, Agent Orange, Whipple’s Disease, AFIP’s card punch computer, AFIP’s department of Infectious Diseases.
  • RICHARD FROEDE, served as first Armed Forces Medical Examiner (1988-1992): discusses British and American pathology, Project Gemini, sending cases to AFIP from Europe, forensic pathology at AFIP, AFIP’s gunnery range, Vietnam, battleship Iowa, Marine COL Higgins, Desert Storm.
  • KENTON HARTMAN, chairman of Oral Pathology (1984-1987), associate director of AFIP (1987-): discusses definition of oral pathology, forensic dentistry, Jonestown, Beirut Marine compound explosion, DNA identification.
  • ELSON B. HELWIG, chairman, Department of Skin and Gastrointestinal Pathology (1947-1980); registrar of American Registry of Dermal Pathology (1948-1980); registrar of American Registry of Gastrointestinal Pathology (1952-199[?]): discusses AFIP registries in 1930s and 40s, Berry Plan.
  • VINCENT J. HYAMS, AFIP Cardiovascular Pathology and Otolaryngologic Pathology departments: discusses AFIP’s relationships with other institutions, drug abuse. Nelson Irey, chairman, Department of Environmental and Drug-Induced Pathology AFIP (1965-199[?]): discusses AFIP study sets, relationship between AFIP and WRAMC, drug abuse, Universities Associated for Research and Education in Pathology (UAREP), Kuwait smoke exposure studies, hazardous waste dump sites.
  • KAMAL G. ISHAK, director of Hepatic and Gastrointestinal Pathology, AFIP at time of interview: discusses NAMU III, schistosomiasis, Suez crisis, hepatitis, training, and drug reactions.
  • FRANK B. JOHNSON, chief of Biochemistry and Biophysics, head of Education branch, AFIP, curator of Medical Museum (for two years in 1980s): discusses prejudice in Army and in hospitals, chemical pathology, radiation cataracts, integration of armed forces, electron microscopes, Dubin-Johnson syndrome, Registry of Former Prisoners of War.
  • LENT C. JOHNSON, Department of Inflammatory Vascular Pathology, AFIP: discusses growing up in Chicago and University of Chicago, AMM from the Civil War to World War I, Senator Ted Kennedy’s son, definition of pathology.
  • THOMAS C. JONES, chief, Veterinary Pathology section (1946-1950), registrar of Registry of Veterinary Pathology (1953-1957): discusses Army Medical Research Board, Raymond Kelser, Army cavalry, AFIP directors Dart and Ash, animal and human pathology, American College of Veterinary Pathologists.
  • ROBERT F. KARNEI JR., director of AFIP (1987-1991): discusses pathological training, recruiting efforts at AFIP, AFIP’s fees for services, Medical Examiner System, DNA, accreditation, JFK autopsy.
  • DONALD KING, executive director for ARP at time of interview: discusses development of pathology field, medical education in the US and abroad, ARP.
  • JOHN MADEWELL, radiology fellowship (one year), stayed at AFIP until 1982: discusses Dr. Ernest Lachman, history and development of radiology, military case material, AFIP teaching and organization, AFIP’s distinguished scientist program, Legionnaires’ Disease, AFIP’s Radiology Department.
  • ROBERT R. McMEEKIN, director of AFIP (1983-1987): discusses WRAMC during Vietnam, aviation pathology, Ionian Sea aircraft crash, Ash lectures.
  • ENRIQUE MENDEZ, JR., assistant secretary of defense for health affairs and chair of AFIP Board of Governors (1990-1993): discusses ambulatory medicine, military hospital system, veteran’s hospitals, Puerto Rico, Persian Gulf War.
  • WAYNE MEYERS, AFIP Leprosy Register 1975-[?]: discusses Africa in 60s, leprosy treatment, AIDS, Leprosy Registry, filariasis.
  • MARC MICOZZI, director of NMHM, 1986-199[?]: discusses medical examiners and Miami, diet and cancer, history and future of the Museum, ARP, DNA, AIDS consortium.
  • F.K. MOSTOFI, chairman of Center for Advanced Pathology and associate director for consultation at AFIP (1977-1986): discusses development of Genitourinary Pathology Registry, other early registries and ARP, international work at AFIP, UAREP and ARP, fundraising. Florabel Garcia Mullick, in 1970 came to the AFIP, Dept. of Environmental and Toxicologic Pathology; became director of the Center for Advanced Pathology in 1994: discusses struggle with family/university over career, pathology at the University of Puerto Rico, pediatric infectious diseases, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, cardiovascular surgery, adverse drug reactions, Reye's Syndrome, Agent Orange, Gulf War illnesses, student intern program, legal cases, and recruitment.
  • RONALD C. NEAFIE, became a lab technician at AFIP in 1963, parasitologist on Project Hope hospital ship in Brazil in summers of 1972 and 1973, became chief of Parasitic Disease Pathology Branch of Parasitic Division at AFIP: discusses animal research, parasitology, diseases in Vietnam and the Persian Gulf War, Project Hope, AIDS.
  • BRUCE H. SMITH, deputy director of AFIP (1963-1967), director of AFIP (1967-1971): discusses pathology in Navy, John F. and Robert Kennedy assassinations, move of AMM from Old Red Brick to Walter Reed, UAREP.
  • CHARLES STAHL, chief of forensic pathology 1965-1975, became Armed Forces Medical Examiner at AFIP in 1992: discusses anatomical and clinical pathology, Irina Kaprowska, forensic pathology, development of forensic pathology at AFIP, aerospace pathology, GEN Blumberg, AFIP training, George Washington University, Vietnam, Green Beret Case and other forensic military cases, Project Geminia, Robert Kennedy, Old Red Brick, ARP, pathology at the Naval Medical Center, Hal Schumacher, AFIP's Medical Examiner's Office, DNA.
  • ROBERT E. STOWELL, scentific director of AFIP (1959-1967): discusses AFIP research, UAREP, efforts to keep the Old Red Brick, ARP.
  • FRANK TOWNSEND, deputy director of AFIP (1955-1959), director (1959-1963): discusses AFIP in the new building, UAREP, recruiting, NIH, Medical Examiner System, military accident investigations, nuclear medicine, the AFIP history book.
  • SHARON WEISS, assistant chairman (1976-1987) and chairman (1988-1989) of Department of Soft Tissue Pathology at AFIP, registrar of the Registry of Soft Tissue Pathology (1988-1989): discusses women in medical training, Agent Orange, Ronald Reagan, textbook on soft tissue tumors.
  • HYMAN J. ZIMMERMAN, in 1960s started weekly diagnostic meetings with the Hepatic Department at AFIP, which developed into national conferences called the Zimm Conference: discusses serving in Europe in World War II, liver biopsy, hepatitis, AFIP's relation to VA, Zimm Conference.
  • LORENZ E. ZIMMERMAN, assigned to AFIP in 1952, rotated through various departments, headed Registry of Opthalmic Pathology (1953-): discusses relationship between WRAMC and AFIP, service in Korea, Helena Wilder, Registry of Ophthalmic Pathology.