Document Type



Oregon Health & Science University

Table of Contents

Family Background and Early Life; Medical Education; Residency; Great Depression; World War II and Tuberculosis; Private Practice; Continuing Involvement with UOMS; Establishment of the Premature Nursery at Doernbecher; Early Development of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit; Advances in Pediatrics, 1960’s-1970’s; Research Interests; Further Development of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit; Reflections on a Career in Pediatrics; Index


In this oral history, S. Gorham Babson, M.D., born on January 5, 1912, talks about his early years growing up in Hood River, Oregon. Babson then discusses his education at Reed College, the University of Oregon, and the University of Oregon Medical School as well as his residencies at the Babies Hospital in New York and Stanford-Lane Hospital in San Francisco. He also recalls the Great Depression, his military service in World War II, and his opening of a private practice in Portland in 1940 and the types of cases he typically encountered then. In 1950, he helped Nurse Betty Weible establish a premature infant nursery at Doernbecher Children's Hospital that became a regional center for neonatal care and developed systems of transport to bring premature infants to Doernbecher from around the state. Babson describes the first use of helicopters to transport critical infants to Doernbecher in 1972. He reflects on the emergence of neonatology as a specialty within pediatrics and the role of the nurse in premature infant care. Lastly, he discusses his research interests in twin studies and fetal nail growth as a measure of maturity.


Transcript of oral history interview with S. Gorham Babson, M.D., conducted on June 23, 1999 by Heather Rosenwinkel.


OHSU Oral History Project




School of Medicine


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