Item AAAB2171 - Alexander Menzies interview

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Alexander Menzies interview

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  • sound recording

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  • 1976-01-09 [date recorded] (Creation)

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CALL NUMBER: T1984:0001 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Public health : industrial, municipal, provincial PERIOD COVERED: 1889-1925 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1976-01-09 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Dr. Menzies talks about his early childhood on Pender Island and various jobs in the sawmill and on the farm; early education and entrance into Westminster Hall, Vancouver, and acceptance int;o the Manitoba Medical College in 1913; description of the medical program; the outbreak of the First World War; problems of finance; recruitment into the 12th Field Ambulance in 1915 and lead-in to wartime experiences; overseas experiences from 1916, including battle conditions and medic responsibilities in Ypres, Amiens, Somme and Grand Serviens. TRACK 2: The return home in March 1919; the problems of leaving England and the trans-Atlantic trip, discussed in some detail; the return to medical school; Dr. Tisdall and the apprenticeship in the summer of 1919; Dr. Menzies completed his final fifth year in 1920 and passed the medical counsel exams; a brief description of his internship at VGH follows; in October of 1921, Dr. Menzies became staff doctor at Britannia Mines; the mine cave in t;hat occurred two days later.;

CALL NUMBER: T1984:0002 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Public health : Dr. A.R. Menzies PERIOD COVERED: 1920-1936 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1976-01-09 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Dr. Menzies goes into some detail about his life at Britannia Mine; flood in 1921 is the major topic, including a description of the disaster and medical problems; a brief description of the ;main town site and mountain camp and the common injuries and first aid practice; Dr. Menzies' role as Provincial Health Inspector and experience with communicable diseases such as STDs, smallpox and scarlet fever. TRACK 2: The Britannia experience is ended with Dr. Menzies resignation over a conflict of interest; he mentions again the relationships and prevalent accidents; his return to Vancouver; and work in the laboratories of VGH. Dr. Menzies went to U of T School of Hygiene in 1930, under a fellowship, and returned to Vancouver the following year. In 1931, Menzies became Provincial Epidemiologist; his role in such issues as typhoid control, sanitation and food handling.;

CALL NUMBER: T1984:0003 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Public health : Dr. A.R. Menzies PERIOD COVERED: 1936-1960 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1976-01-09 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: The issues involved in public health dentistry, such as fluoridation. Vision and hearing tests in schools were also part of the program. Dr. Menzies relates his most embarrassing situation involving a co-ed student at UBC. In summary, Dr. Menzies discusses the advantages and disadvantages of being involved in public health service. TRACK 2: In 1936, Dr. Menzies joined the Metro Health Committee. He gives a description of its organisation and his first assignments; a discussion of the personnel and programs in the schools and baby clinics; Unit #1 and the issues of food handling and the kindergarten clinic; contact with communicable diseases such as polio; facilities for the handicapped. Dr. Menzies gives a description of the locations of the health units from 1936 to 1959. In 195;9, Dr. Menzies became Senior Medical Health Officer. He describes his responsibilities, and discusses changes in the health department, personnel, offices and services.;

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West Coast Medical Historical Society Inc., 1976


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Reference cassette copy available in container 000443-121 and -122.

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  • Copyright Status: Copyright undetermined.

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Accession number(s): T1984

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speaker: Alexander Morrison Menzies, interviewer: Beverly A. MacPherson

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