Neuroscience History Archives

Brain Research Institute
University of California, Los Angeles
Box 951761
Los Angeles, California 90095-1761 USA

Voice: (310) 825-6940 -- Russell Johnson, Archivist
Voice: (310) 794-2930 -- Joel Braslow, Director
Fax: (310) 206-5855

About the NHA: Mission, Activities, History  |   NHA Staff  |   NHA Collections
Neuroscience History at UCLA - Calendar

UCLA Brain Research Institute
History and Special Collections Division, UCLA Biomedical Library

Neuroscience History Affinity Group

What are archives?

International Society for the History of the Neurosciences (ISHN)  |   Journal of the History of the Neurosciences

HISTNEUR-L: The History of Neuroscience Internet Forum



The Neuroscience History Archives (NHA) promotes the advancement and diffusion of knowledge about the history of neuroscience. Through the identification, collection, and preservation of primary source material of twentieth century American neuroscience, the NHA seeks to create a documentary heritage for future generations that will represent the ideas, actions, and accomplishments of the discipline's antecedent practitioners.


The NHA identifies and preserves the papers of living neuroscientists and records of their professional organizations; assists neuroscientists in finding appropriate repositories for their papers; promotes access to this documentary evidence through the preparation of finding aids and other guides; facilitates scholarly use of the collections; and carries out research and education in the history of neuroscience.


As one of the first archives to focus solely on a biomedical discipline, the Neuroscience History Archives was established in 1980 at the UCLA Brain Research Institute in response to the scholarly need for documentation of American neuroscience in the twentieth century. With modest support from the National Library of Medicine and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, reference resources were complemented by primary materials such as oral histories, personal papers, and organizational records. The work continues, with income from the Frances O'Malley Trust, under the oversight of and in collaboration with the Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library, the Brain Research Institute, and the Division of Medical History of the Department of Neurobiology in the UCLA School of Medicine.
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Joel Braslow, MD, PhD, Director
Russell A. Johnson, MA, MLS, Archivist


Carmine D. Clemente, MD
Professor Emeritus, Neurobiology
Judy Consales, MLS
Acting Director, Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library
Anne Gilliland, PhD
Assoc. Professor, Information Science
Robert Lemelson, PhD
Asst. Professor, Psychology; Founder & President, Foundation for Psycho-cultural Research
Ynez V. O'Neill, PhD
Professor, Medical History
Chris Evans, Ph.D.
Director, Brain Research Institute
Kenneth B. Wells, MD, MPH
Professor, Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Sciences
Peter C. Whybrow, MD
Professor and Chair, Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Sciences; Director, Neuropsychiatric Institute

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Neuroscience History Affinity Group

"A series of interdisciplinary affinity groups, developed to provide scientific exchange of specific research topics, continue to meet at regular intervals at the UCLA Brain Research Institute. These groups represent one of the greatest strengths of the Institute, that is, the scientific depth and diversity of its membership."  <>

    2002-2003 Meetings

  • Ralph R. Sonnenschein, PhD (Professor of Physiology, Emeritus) and Pat Sonnenschein: "The Ralph R. Sonnenschein Collection of Scientific and Medical Commemorative Medals" (11/22/2002)

    2001-2002 Meetings

  • Mark Infusino, PhD (Medical History Division, Department of Neurobiology): "Vesalius, Paré, and the Death of Henri II: A Historical Case of Head Trauma and a Modern Parallel"; video and discussion (12/13/2001)

    2000-2001 Meetings

  • Joe Dumit, PhD (Massachusetts Institute of Technology): "Teaching history of neuroscience at MIT"; and discussion of Warren McCulloch's "Physiological processes underlying psychoneuroses" (3/12/2001)
  • Kenneth Ögren (University of Umeå, Sweden): "History of prefrontal lobotomy" (2/1/2001)
  • Larry Kruger, PhD (Department of Neurobiology): "The purpose of the 'porpess'" (11/17/2000)
  • Joel Braslow, MD, PhD (Departments of History and Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Sciences): "History of clinical trials" (10/19/2000)

    1999-2000 Meetings

  • Axel Karenberg, PhD: "Apoplexy" (6/8/2000)
  • Margaret C. Jacob, PhD: "Why did Humphrey Davy not explore the pain-alleviating properties of nitrous oxide?" (5/19/2000)
  • NHA and Biomedical Library: "Recent acquisitions" (4/28/2000)
  • Robert Galambos, PhD: Opening of the Robert Galambos Papers--Lecture, Exhibit, and Reception (3/17/2000)
  • Joel Braslow, PhD: "History of biological therapies" (1/21/2000)
  • Marcia L. Meldrum, PhD: "The chronic suffering rat: Translations from laboratory to clinic" (12/17/1999)
  • Arne B. Scheibel, PhD: "What's so special about Einstein's brain?" (11/11/1999)

    1998-1999 Meetings

  • Thelma Estrin, PhD: "Y2K minus 40: Computerizing neuroscience at UCLA" (6/18/99)
  • Dahlia Zaidel, PhD: "Beauty and the brain: The biological relationship between facial attractiveness and brain evolution" (4/30/99)
  • Russell A. Johnson, MA, MLS: "Internet resources for neuroscience history" (3/19/99)
  • Ynez V. O'Neill, PhD: "Sleuthing for a manuscript in England and Medical history in Tunisia"; and Robert G. Frank, Jr., PhD: "Work in progress (Germany and England)" (1/22/99)
  • David Millett, PhD cand.: "Summer adventures into neuroscience history (England and Germany)" (11/20/98)
  • Organizational meeting (5/15/98)

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What are Archives?

Archives consist of a wide range of personal papers and records that document scientific and academic careers:

Biographical material: curriculum vitae, bio-bibliographies, interviews, memoirs.

Correspondence: outgoing (copies or drafts) and incoming letters relating to all facets of one's career; personal letters to and from colleagues, relatives, and friends.

Diaries and appointment calendars.

Research files: outlines, proposals, notes on experimental designs, raw data, laboratory notebooks, grant reports.

Drafts and manuscripts of articles, books, reviews, and speeches

Published papers and monographs.

Instructional material: lecture notes, syllabi and course outlines, reading lists, exam questions, and course evaluations.

Professional and organizational files: announcements, agendas, minutes, committee correspondence, memoranda, and reports.

Audiotapes, videotapes, and films of lectures, speeches, social functions, and interviews.

Photographs and slides.

Ephemera: scrapbooks and memorabilia.

Informative brochures published by the Society of American Archivists:

NHA Collections


  • Percival Bailey (1892-1973). Papers, 1895-1992. 10 linear ft. (6 boxes, 3 photograph boxes, 2 oversize boxes) [in process]

  • John Field (1902-1983). Collection of UCLA History of Medicine Syllabi and Lecture Notes, 1953-1961. 0.5 linear ft. (1 box)

  • Daniel X. Freedman (1914-1993). Papers, ca. 1921-1993. 115.5 linear ft. (225 boxes, 1 oversize box)
    [Collection 369, Department of Special Collections, University Research Library; archival processing by NHA staff for the Department of Special Collections]

  • Robert Galambos (1914- ). Papers. 160 linear ft. (160 boxes)

  • John D. Green (1917-1964). Papers, 1948-1960. 0.5 linear ft. (1 box)

  • Gilbert Van Tassel Hamilton (1877-1943). Diary and Narrative Poem, n.d.. 0.5 linear ft. (1 box)

  • Rafael Lorente de Nó (1902-1990). Papers. 11 linear ft. (8 cartons, 1 oversize box) [in process]

  • Horace Winchell Magoun (1907-1991). Papers, 1876-1991. 27.5 linear ft. (45 boxes, 3 oversize boxes)


  • Neuroscience History Archives Photographic Collection. More than 2000 images of people, laboratories, instruments, artifacts, and illustrations from prehistory to the present

  • Horace Winchell Magoun Photographic Collection. Ca. 200 images from 1931 to 1991

  • Edward J. Fine Photographic Collection. Photographs of historians of neuroscience at meetings of the International Society for the History of the Neurosciences (ISHN)


  • International Society for the History of the Neurosciences

  • International Brain Research Organization

  • Committee on Brain Sciences, National Research Council

  • Society for Neuroscience (antecedents and formation)

  • International Society for the History of the Neurosciences

  • UCLA Brain Research Institute [Processed by NHA staff for the University Archives, UCLA]

  • WIN: Women in Neuroscience

ORAL HISTORY INTERVIEWS (audiotapes and videotapes)

  • UCLA Brain Research Institute (73 individuals)
  • Contributors to Neuroscience (51)
  • Illinois Neuropsychiatric Institute (15)
  • Los Angeles Early School of Neurology (13)

LECTURES AND CEREMONIES (audiotapes, videotapes, and films)

  • American Physiological Society (15)
  • Society for Neuroscience (47)
  • Miscellaneous (34)

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JD French, DB Lindsley and HW Magoun. An American Contribution to Neuroscience: The Brain Research Institute, UCLA, 1959-1984 Los Angeles: UCLA Brain Research Institute, 1984.

LH Marshall and MM Patterson. Stereotaxic Atlases and Related References. Tujunga, CA: David Kopf Instruments, 1991.

LH Marshall and HW Magoun. Discoveries in the Human Brain: Neuroscience Prehistory, Structure, and Function. Totowa, NJ: Humana Press, 1998.

HW Magoun [LH Marshall, comp. and ed.] American Neuroscience in the Twentieth Century. Amsterdam; Berwyn, PA: Swets & Zeitlinger [2003]

Internet Resources

HISTNEUR-L: The History of Neuroscience Internet Forum

PURPOSE: HISTNEUR-L is an Internet forum for exchanging information on any aspect of the History of Neuroscience. It includes announcements, inquiries and discussion on access to historical sources and their use and interpretation.
AUDIENCE: Membership is open to anyone interested in neuroscience history, including but by no means limited to historians, scientists, students, instructors, curators, publishers, archivists and librarians. The listserv is maintained for the benefit of the International Society for the History of the Neurosciences (ISHN), but is open to all (anyone with an e-mail account and an interest in the subject is welcomed).

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Neuroscience History Archives (UCLA)

Last updated 17 March 2009

NHA logo used with permission of the publisher: Figure 42. Lateral view of monkey's brain, showing ascending reticular system in the core of the brain stem, receiving collaterals from an afferent pathway and projecting widely to cortical areas. Magoun, HW. The Waking Brain. 2nd ed. Springfield, Ill.: Charles C Thomas, 1963.

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