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Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives (CHOMA)

The Ward J, MacNeal Papers

Ward J. MacNeal was born in Fulton, Michigan in 1881. He received B.A. (1901), Ph.D. (1904) and M.D. (1905) degrees from the University of Michigan, where he worked with Frederick G. Novy. Together they published a number of papers on the trypanosomes. The next few years saw him teaching at Michigan, West Virginia University, and the University of Illinois. In 1911 he was appointed lecturer at the New York Post-Graduate Medical School and Hospital; a year later he was made full professor. Except for service on the American Trench Fever Commission during World War I, MacNeal remained at Post-Graduate for the rest of his career. He died in 1946.

MacNeal's areas of study included antibiotic and bacteriophage therapy, bacterial endocarditis and rheumatic fever.

The materials in this collection were donated to the Archives by Miss Anne Blevins, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, who studied and worked with Dr. MacNeal at the New York Post Graduate Medical School and Hospital from 1934 until his death in 1946. Some materials included in the files were not specifically related to Dr. MacNeal or his work, and indeed, some of them post-dated his death. These materials have been incorporated into appropriate other locations in the Archives collections, with the approval of Miss Blevins. A list of the relocated items follows the folder list for the Ward J. MacNeal Papers. See also letter of Anne Blevins to Jeff Karr, January 12, 1996, in Folder 1.

In 1913, MacNeal undertook the revisions for the sixth edition of Herbert U. Williams' Manual of Bacteriology, which was published in 1914 as Pathogenic Microorganisms. His personal copy is in the ASM Archives Book Collection (QR46.M4 copy 2)


Contact the ASM Archivist for further information.


CASE FILE. Correspondence of Perry MacNeal (son of WJM) w/ Archivist, 1974;  correspondence of Anne Blevins and Ruth McEvoy (daughter of WJM) w/ Archivist, 1993-6;


1. Bibliography, bio sketches of WJM from Bio/bibliography file; copies of obituaries and eulogy, 1946.


2. Correspondence: WJM, 1915-1944; Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, 1916-1927  (5 items: Correspondents include Theobald Smith, Florence Sabin, F.F. Russell); Victor Myers, Director of New York Post-Graduate Medical School, 1917-1919; Miscellaneous non-WJM, 1914-1928; Anne Blevins/Alfred Lazarus, 1948-49


3. Penicillinase activity report by AB, 1944; reprints on Penicillinase, 1944-1947


4. Penicillin Assays for Rare Chemical Co.: Notes, sketches, 1942-43 (many n.d.); assay reports, related WJM correspondence, 1943


5. Bacillary Dysentary in embryonated eggs:  WJM Typescripts, handwritten MSS, 1942-43; related reprints


6. Miscellaneous Phage materials: typescript of Twort paper from Lancet, 1915; phage/case records lists, 1946; typescripts of 3 WJM papers: 1932, 1934, 1944; "Report of the Committee to review the Results of bacteriophage," [1934?]


7. Reprints, on bacteriophage, viruses, etc., 1912-1952. All marked "Return to Phage file," with number, P.-2 to P.-360; 651-681. Numbering is not chronological or alphabetical


8. Rocamora, John: Typescript, reprint on case history, 1945-46


9. Typhoid - Paratyphoid Phages: Notes, 1947


10. Staphylococcus and Strep Phages: record of lysis, 1946-50


11. Antibiotic Studies: Streptomycin, Gantricin, Sulfadiazine, Sulfapyridine, Teramycin, Brucella - Phage Index, Sed Rates - Acne, Vaccine - Filtrates, 1945-52


12. Aureomycin, Chloromycin, Penicillin, Polymycin, Neomycin. 1946-52. Original folder titled listed Geromycin instead of Aureomycin.


13. Miscellaneous antibiotic studies, 1952-53


14. Dysentary Phages with possible source lytic record, 1943-1950


15. WJM reprints on Trypanosomes, 1904, 1905


16. "Inactivation of Influenza Virus by Mild Antiseptics:" MSS by WJM, 1942


17. Miscellaneous materials on antibiotic methods, incl. some AB correspondence, 1942-43, 1948


18. Lytic records of Bacteriophages from the Ward J. MacNeal Collection, late 1940s


19. Exam Booklets containing WJM's handwritten abstracts of articles: "Bacteriophage and filterable viruses:" 9 booklets, 1937-1943; "Osteomyelitis," 12 booklets, ca. 1936-1940. Signed reprint, 1937.


20. Exam Booklets containing WJM's handwritten abstracts of articles, 1938-1945: "Hyperthermia," 2 booklets; "Bacillary Dysentery," 3 booklets; "Blood Groups," 1 booklet; "Actinomycoses," 1 booklet; "Bacteriophage and viruses," 2 booklets; 'Neoplasms," 1 booklet; "Meningitis," 8 booklets; "Wound Healing," 1 booklet. "Proceedings of the Staff Meetings of the Mayo Clinic, 7:32, 1932:" contains report of case of treatment of staphylococcus pyemia w/ phage.


21. Exam Booklets containing WJM's handwritten abstracts of articles, 1936-1943: "Staphylococcus sepsis and infections:" 1 booklet; "Septicemia:" 3 booklets; "Bacterial endocarditis:" 6 booklets; "Cavernous sinus:" 4 booklets; "Streptococcus infections:" 2 booklets; "Viruses:" 3 booklets; "Autochemotherapy:" 1 booklet; "Chemotherapy:" 3 booklets.


22. Camera Lucida drawings by WJM, rabbit and guinea pig heart sections, 1945; Vibrio Cholerae undergoing lysis by phage, 1945


23. American Journal of Pathology XXI:2, 1945. Article by MacNeal, et al. is illustrated with camera lucida drawings by WJM


24. Photomicrographs (by Anne Blevins) of E. coli + phage, and cholera + phage, 1938; Bacterial cells undergoing lysis, 1938


25. Lab notes on penicillin level testing, rabbits and human volunteers, 1945-46


26. Penicillin pain testing (Schenley), 1945-46


27. Folders 27 and 27.1 - Materials in Folder 27 are case histories relating to phage therapy as described in MacNeal, W.J., F.C. Frisbee and M.A. McRae. "Staphylococcemia 1931-1940.   Five Hundred Patients." American Journal of Clinical Pathology 12:6, 1942 (reprint included); Folder 27.1 contains histories from envelope labeled by Anne Blevins "Additional cases -- Staphylococcal Bacteremia A-K no room in note books." The remaining folders contain histories originally in blue binders, labelled as indicated on the folder. Many histories are numbered, with the numbers corresponding to the table on pp. 285-87 in the reprint. The case histories date from 1930-38.


28. "S. viridans endocarditis -- Preliminary Notes -- no work-up  1936-1938." Abbreviated case notes.


29. Application for approval of Public Health Laboratory Service, n.d., 1924


30. Charts (hand-inked) for case study of Mary Finnegan. Photocopy of MacNeal, et al, "Clinical Arrest of Endocarditis Lenta by Penicillin," American Heart Journal 28:5, 669-79, 1944 included. Oversized folder.  



  • Typescript: "Nocardia Asteroides Infection: A Report of Seven Cases," by Martha C. Larsen, et al., n.d. [ca. 1957]: to VERTICAL FILE: DISEASE: NOCARDIOSIS
  • Bacitracin Reprints, 1947-1951: to VERTICAL FILE: ANTIBIOTICS: BACITRACIN
  • Reprints on Streptomycin and Streptomycin Assay Methods, 1944-1949: to VERTICAL FILE: ANTIBIOTICS: STREPTOMYCIN
  • Typescript: "Erythromycin: Confidential Report -- Not for General Circulation...Compiled by R.E.H., September, 1952:" to VERTICAL FILE: ANTIBIOTICS: ERYTHROMYCIN
  • Materials relating to Anne Blevins article, "Pulmonary Mycetoma due to Allescheria Boydii," 1965-1966: to BIO/BIBLIOGRAPHICAL FILE for BLEVINS, ANNE
  • Typescript, report on Antibiotic Symposium by B. Marr Lanman, 1953: to VERTICAL FILE: ANTIBIOTICS: GENERAL
  • Mimeographed report, "The Survival Time of Cholera Organisms in Water," by F.A. Hallock, 1948: to VERTICAL FILE: DISEASE: CHOLERA