A Biographical History of Endocrinology PDF
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The beginning of this book can be linked to a telephone call I received from Mr. John Gardner, a Senior Editor at Williams and Wilkins Publishing Company in Baltimore. The year was 1989. He asked if I could come to Baltimore to meet with him, and a time was set. The purpose of that meeting turned out to be the development of a new clinical journal in endocrinology. We mapped out on that day what became The Endocrinologist. One of its main features was the “Historical Vignette.” I told John that I could not move forward with the project until I had offered to let the Endocrine Society be involved in some way. I was invited to the 1990 Endocrine Society Council meeting to present my case. Jack Groski was the president. My main points were that, compared to other subspecialty societies, the Endocrine Society did little for the endocrinologists in practice. A bona fide clinical journal would help. Second, the journal could become another “money maker” for the society. Jean Wilson spoke for the society in thanking me for coming to them, but that they were happy with the current structure and wished me well. So, I went ahead with Williams and Wilkins. We had the Journal up and running within the year.
In the beginning, I wrote all of the Historical Vignettes, and Clark T. Sawin did the book reviews. With time, I had to have help with the Vignettes, so Clark stepped in and we began to alternate issues until his untimely death in 2004, after which I wrote all of them again. The Journal had a run of 20 years, six issues a year, 120 Vignettes. Of these, Clark wrote 45, and I wrote the rest except for a few; Michael Bliss wrote about J.J.R. MacLeod, Jim Magner wrote about Emil Fischer, Leon Speroff wrote about Soranus of Ephesus and Gregory Pincus, Ron Rosenfeld wrote about Henry Turner, and Harry K. Ziel co‐wrote about Frederick L. Hisaw. In the table of contents, the author of each chapter is identified.
When the Journal ended for lack of advertising funds in 2010, I wanted to ensure that the Vignettes would not be lost. I was fortunate to get the copyrights to all of them, with the idea of putting together a Biographical History of Endocrinology. It has been a steady grind since then but, with the help of the Endocrine Society and Wiley, the Publisher, it finally came together.
There is already an outstanding book on the history of endocrinology written by Victor Medvei. It is encyclopedic and beautifully written. My guess is that not many have read it. Most use it as a reference source which can be counted on for fidelity. A Biographical History of Endocrinology is written to be read. Each chapter is only a few pages long and illustrates the role of the subject in the progress of our medical specialty. I expect there will be some controversy about who I included in the book and who I did not. Hopefully, somewhere down the line there will be a second edition and these shortcomings can be remedied.
I would like to acknowledge the following people who played an important role in the creation of this book. First, to John Gardner and his staff at Williams and Wilkins for supporting the concept in the beginning. Terri Loriaux, Jennifer Loney, and Patricia Hastart prepared all of the manuscripts for editing, over and over again. Stacey Lipps retrieved all of the manuscripts from Lippincott and reformatted them in a book format. Taryn Aab has typed it all again, downloaded the chapters to at least four different sites, coordinated all of the copyright issues, including tough ones like the Vatican, and kept the entire operation on track. Her input was essential to the successful completion of this project. Giancarlo D’Agata, an old friend from Catania, stepped in to help with permissions from the Vatican when the English language was not up to the task.
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