By Matt Richardson, Archivist and Special Collections Librarian
The McGovern Historical Center is proud to announce the opening of a new exhibit at the TMC Library. This exhibit celebrates the life and work of one of the Texas Medical Center’s founders and strongest champions, Dr. Ernst Bertner.
Presented in two sections, the exhibit uses materials from the archives to highlight both Dr. Bertner’s professional contributions and his personal life.
Dr. Bertner’s collection offers a tour through the formative years of the TMC. The “professional” half of the exhibit shows him receiving the deed to the property at the TMC Dedicatory Dinner, presiding over the Dedication of the M.D. Anderson Hospital for Cancer Research, and attending the laying of the cornerstone for Methodist Hospital, all within a span of six years. The exhibit tells this story through a mixture of photographs, event programs, and newspaper clippings.
On the “personal” side, the exhibit showcases Dr. Bertner’s service in World War I, as well as his courtship and marriage to Julia Williams Bertner. Included here are letters from Dr. Bertner’s family, as well as photographs showing the Bertners at leisure. In fact, Julia Bertner (later Naylor) deserves no small portion of credit for this exhibit—not only was she by Dr. Bertner’s side through this exciting period, but she also donated much of this material to the archives!
Putting together the exhibit also provided an opportunity to scan materials from Dr. Bertner’s archival collection. There are nearly fifty photographs and a dozen documents newly available online—think of it as “bonus material” to compliment the exhibit. That’s in addition to the two phonograph recordings of Dr. Bertner’s voice we blogged about previously.
Since the Research Center is located a few miles down the road from the main TMC Library, exhibits like this one provide an opportunity for the archives to connect to students and other visitors there. We hope you have a chance to visit and check it out!