Date: September 12, 1960; September 26, 1960
Source: Letters published in Newsweek, September 12, 1960, 15–17; September 26, 1960, 14–16.
About the Publication: Newsweek originated as The Illustrated News Magazine, founded in 1933 by Thomas J. Martyn, a former editor of Time magazine. It was published by Weekly Publication, Inc., based in Dayton, Ohio, with editorial and executive departments in New York City. Eventually the name became News-Week, then Newsweek by the end of the 1930s. In 1961, Washington Post publisher Philip L. Graham bought the magazine. In addition to current news events, the magazine's coverage includes art, health, science, religion, economics, and sports.
In 1960, all fifty states prohibited abortion, though forty-five exempted women whose pregnancy threatened their life. Women who wanted an abortion either paid surgeons large fees, went to amateurs, or sought the procedure abroad.
State legislatures softened their opposition to abortion during the decade. Colorado led the way in permitting abortion in the case of rape or incest. Other states questioned the wisdom of forcing women to give birth to...
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By: Morris K. Udall
Date: August 17, 1962
Source: Udall, Morris K. Congressman's Report. Available online at http://www.library.arizona.edu/branches/spc/udall/congrept/... ; website home page: http://www.library.arizona.edu/ (accessed March 31, 2003).
About the Author: Morris King Udall (1922–1998) was born in St. John's, Arizona. He served 30 years in the U.S. House of Representatives. Perhaps his greatest accomplishment was the Alaska Lands Act, which substantially increased the size of the national park system. In 1976, Udall sought the Democratic nomination for president, losing to Jimmy Carter (served 1977–1981). He was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1979, and retired from politics in 1991.
The drug firm Ciba-Geigy developed Thalidomide to prevent seizures in humans. When it failed to do so in tests, Ciba-Geigy sold it to Chemie Gruenenthal, a West German pharmaceutical company.
Chemie Gruenenthal discovered that Thalidomide was an effective sedative. Unlike other sedatives, Thalidomide could be administered in large doses, without...
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"Heart Transplantation in Man"
By: James D. Hardy
Date: June 29, 1964
Source: Hardy, James D. "Heart Transplantation in Man." Journal of the American Medical Association 188, June 29, 1964, 1132–1134, 1135, 1138–1140.
About the Author: James D. Hardy (1918–2003) grew up in Newala, Alabama, and received a master's degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1942. In 1951, the university awarded him the Master of Medical Science in physiological chemistry. His transplant of a chimpanzee heart into a human in 1964 made international headlines. Hardy served as chairman of the surgery department of Loma Linda Medical Center in California from 1955 until his retirement in 1987.
The transplant of a heart or any other organ into a human is complicated by the fact that the immune system recognizes a new heart or other organ in the same way it recognizes bacteria or viruses—as a foreign invader. This recognition leads the immune system to manufacture white blood cells and antibodies to attack the invader. While in the case of bacteria and viruses this reaction protects the body, in the case of a heart transplant the white blood cells and antibodies may damage the heart enough to kill the patient.
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Smoking and Health: Report of the Advisory Committee to the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service
By: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare
Source: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. Smoking and Health: Report of the Advisory Committee to the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1964, 7, 8, 25, 26–27, 28–30, 31.
About the Organization: Congress created the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare in 1953 upon the recommendation of President Dwight D. Eisenhower (served 1953–1961). The department consolidated several medical and health agencies under one umbrella. Among its agencies was the Public Health Service, which examined the link between smoking and illness.
The smoking of tobacco and its relation to health has a curious history. Virginia planters exported tobacco to England and continental Europe beginning in 1617, only ten years after the founding of the Jamestown colony. King James I of England declared smoking a filthy habit. He was Scottish by birth, leading many Englishmen to disdain him as a foreigner. In an era when no government tolerated criticism, Englishmen could, without fear of arrest, express their dislike of King James by smoking tobacco.
Eager to adopt the...
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President Johnson's Health Care Programs
President Lyndon B. Johnson's Remarks with President Truman at the Signing in Independence of the Medicare Bill, July 30, 1965
By: Lyndon Baines Johnson and Harry S. Truman
Date: July 30, 1965
Source: Johnson, Lyndon B., and Harry S. Truman. President Lyndon B. Johnson's Remarks with President Truman at the Signing in Independence of the Medicare Bill, July 30, 1965. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Lyndon B. Johnson, 1965, vol. 2. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1966, 811–815. Reprinted online at http://www.lbjlib.utexas.edu/johnson/archives.hom/speeches.... ; website home page: http://www.lbjlib.utexas.edu/ (accessed March 29, 2003).
About the Authors: Lyndon Baines Johnson (1908–1973) was born in Gillespie County, Texas. In 1937, he won election to the U.S. House of Representatives and in 1948 to the U.S. Senate, where he rose to majority leader. In 1960, he accepted John F. Kennedy's (served 1961–1963) offer to run as his vice president on the Democratic ticket. Kennedy's assassination in 1963 made Johnson president. Reelected in 1964, he retired from politics in 1969. Harry...
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"The Artificial Heart"
By: American Medical Association
Date: September 6, 1965
Source: "The Artificial Heart." Journal of the American Medical Association 193, no. 10, September 6, 1965, 25–27, 28, 29, 30.
About the Organization: A group of 250 physicians and surgeons formed the American Medical Association (AMA) in 1847 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Currently headquartered in Chicago, the AMA has grown to 250,000 members, including half of all U.S. physicians. The Association develops and promotes standards in medical practice, research, and education; provides advocacy for physicians and patients; and disseminates information through its Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and other publications.
The development of vaccines and antibiotics reduced the number of deaths from infectious diseases in the first half of the twentieth century, leaving heart disease as the leading killer of Americans by 1955, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture report. At the time, heart disease felled twice as many Americans as cancer, the second-leading killer.
The risk of heart disease increases with age, partly because the heart shrinks and loses strength as a person ages. By age...
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"A Daily Food Guide"
By: Mary M. Hill
Source: Hill, Mary M. "A Daily Food Guide." In Consumers All: The Yearbook of Agriculture, 1965. Washington, D.C: Government Printing Office, 1965, 742–743.
About the Author: Mary M. Hill joined the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service in 1960. She specialized in child nutrition and eventually became director of the Children's Nutrition Research Center at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
IntroductionThe federal government has a long history of trying to educate Americans about proper nutrition. Its first reports and pamphlets on the subject appeared around the beginning of the twentieth century, at a time when nutrition as a science was in its infancy. These reports became more detailed and accurate as scientists developed
When Lyndon Johnson became president in 1963, he...
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By: Anne G. Eifler
Source: Eifler, Anne G. "School Lunches." In Consumers All: The Yearbook of Agriculture, 1965. Washington, D.C: Government Printing Office, 1965, 475–476.
About the Author: Anne G. Eifler earned a Ph.D. in nutrition from Iowa State University in 1958 and joined the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service as a nutritionist in 1961. She retired from the department in 1995 and died in 2002 in Ames, Iowa.
The federal government had promoted the health of Americans since Congress founded the Public Health Service in 1789. The federal commitment to health grew during the 1960s.
Lyndon Baines Johnson (served 1963–1969), who became president upon John F. Kennedy's (served 1961–1963) assassination, made the quality of Americans' health a priority. He crafted an ambitious agenda, the "Great Society," that included extending government-sponsored medical coverage to the aged and poor. In 1965 he guided Medicare through Congress, guaranteeing medical coverage to Americans at least 65 years old. The next year he persuaded Congress to enact Medicaid, which extended coverage to Americans who fell below an income threshold. In 1968 he estimated that...
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Overweight and What It Takes to Stay Trim
By: Marjorie B. Washbon and Gail G. Harrison
Source: Washbon, Marjorie B., and Gail G. Harrison. Overweight and What It Takes to Stay Trim. In Food For Us All: The Yearbook of Agriculture 1969. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1969, 304–307, 308–309.
About the Authors: Marjorie B. Washbon earned a Ph.D. in nutrition from the University of South Carolina in 1955 and was a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutritionist between 1959 and 1992. In 1982, together with Gail G. Harrison and Helen Gifft, she co-authored the book Nutrition, Behavior, and Change. Gail G. Harrison was a nutritionist at the USDA during the 1960s. Currently professor and chair of the Department of Community Health Science at the University of California at Los Angeles, she has conducted research in the area of cancer prevention through dietary change.
Obesity, a weight at least 20 percent above one's ideal weight, began to attract attention from physicians and scientists in the 1950s. During that decade Ercel Sherman Eppright, a scientist at Iowa State University, examined 1,200 Iowa children, identifying eleven percent of the boys and seventeen percent of the girls as obese. Charlotte M. Young of...
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