U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Skip to main content
Return to topReturn to top

A Decade of Progress - Contents

The history of this study is not without interest. The project was set in motion by my predecessor, Colonel Robert S. Anderson, USA (Ret.), in January 1969, when it became known that Lieutenant General Leonard D. Heaton, The Surgeon General since 1959, had asked to be retired. Under Colonel Anderson's direction and with the enthusiastic support of the Executive Officer, Mr. Charles J. Simpson, The Historical Unit prepared this survey of the problems and accomplishments of the United States Army Medical Department from 1959 to 1969 to honor General Heaton. Manuscript copies of the study were presented to General Heaton and his successor, Lieutenant General Hal B. Jennings, Jr., at retirement ceremonies for General Heaton in September 1969. General Jennings later concluded that this account of the splendid achievements of the Medical Department under the dedicated leadership of a great physician-soldier and administrator would be of interest to civilian students of military-medical history as well as a new generation of Medical Department officers and directed The Historical Unit to prepare the manuscript for publication and distribution.

From the beginning of the project it was recognized thatcertain compromises would be necessary if a study of the scope and diversityenvisioned were to be prepared in a period of less than a year. One suchcompromise was the decision to rely primarily on the Annual Reports of TheSurgeon General for information. Another compromise was to include statisticaldata prepared in the Office of The Surgeon General, although these data may notagree with those published in other Department of the Army documents. Becausethe Annual Reports of TheSurgeon General are readily available, it was decided thatthe study would be published without documentation.

The planning for this work and the preparation of thepreliminary draft were carried out under the supervision of Dr. Rose C. Engelman,Chief, Historians Branch. The Historical Unit, who also wrote several of thechapters. Other past and present staff members of The Historical Unit who wrotechapters or portions of chapters were Miss C. Louise Brady; Colonel Edward J.Costello, USA (Ret.); Mrs. Rebecca L. Levine; Dr. Robert J. Parks, formerlyCaptain, MSC; Major Norbert O. Picha, MSC; and Mrs. Pauline B. Vivette. Thedraft was reviewed by Dr. Stetson Conn, formerly Chief Historian, Department ofthe Army, as well as by the Comptroller, Office of The Surgeon General, and theMedical Statistics Agency, United States Army Medical Department. The reviewcomments aided materially in the final revision of the study for publication.Final editing of the manuscript and preparation of the artwork was accomplishedin the Editorial Branch. The staff of the Editorial Typing Section,Administrative Branch, patiently typed innumerable drafts, the first version ofthe manuscript, and this final revision.

Colonel, Medical Service Corps.