Guide to the Oscar Oldberg (1846-1913) Papers

Collection Title: Oscar Oldberg (1846-1913) Papers
Dates: 1877-1913
Identification: 61/1
Creator: Oldberg, Oscar, 1846-1913
Extent: 2 Boxes
Language of Materials: English
Abstract: The Oscar Oldberg papers consist of a few letters, several articles, lecture notes, and bound and printed volumes.

The Letters are professional in nature. They include a note from Oldberg to pharmacy students, a letter from Northwestern University President A.W. Harris updating Oldberg on the progress of the University's School of Pharmacy after Oldberg's retirement, a letter requesting Oldberg's participation in the Panama—Pacific International Exposition, a letter from Dr. E.R. Squibb, M.D. concerning the American Medical Association, and a publisher's rejection notice relating to an article written by Oldberg entitled, “A Practical Universal Money.”
Acquisition Information: Mrs. Mary Swissler Oldberg donated the papers to the University Archives on October 7, 1987 (Accession #87-238). Addition: Louis D. Boshes, M.D., donated the artifacts to the University Archives on June 29, 2000 (Accession #00-203) Addition: The addition has been separated from papers from Eric and Arne Oldberg (Accession #: 10-20) donated to the University Archives by Anita Kimmerle on February 11, 2010. Addition: The additions have been separated from a donation of papers of Eric and Arne Oldberg (Accession #06-69) donated to the University Archives by Ellen Schantz on February 11, 2010.
Processing Information: Sydney Sidwell; March, 1988.Addition: Kevin B. Leonard; June 29, 2000.Addition: Katherine Oldberg; November 11, 2011
Separated Materials: A small amount of material relating to the Northwestern University School of Pharmacy has been removed to the University Archives general files. Convention buttons and pins have been separated and added to the artifacts collection. A few photographs have been added the photographic collection.Separation: Diploma for Oscar Oldberg from Northwestern University for gaining the Degree of Doctor of Laws on June 14, 1911 has been added to Certificates and Diplomas Collection.
Conditions Governing Access: None.Addition: None.
Repository: Northwestern University Archives
Deering Library, Room 110
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston, IL, 60208-2300
URL: http://www.library.northwestern.edu/archives
Email: archives@northwestern.edu
Phone: 847-491-3354

Biographical/Historical Information

Oscar Oldberg was born January 22, 1846 in Alfta, Helsingland, Sweden, the son of Pastor Andrew and Fredrika (Ohrstromer) Oldberg. He was educated in public schools and by private tutors and later attended the Gymnasium of Gelfe. In 1861 he began working in a drug store and studying pharmacology with Sir F.W. Helleday in Falum. In 1865 he became a licensed pharmacist and moved to the United States.

Oldberg worked as a pharmacist in New York for two years. In 1869 he joined the faculty of the School of Pharmacy of Georgetown College in Washington, D.C. He later became dean of the National College of Pharmacy also in Washington. In 1874 Oldberg began working with the U.S. Marine Hospital Service as chief clerk and medical purveyor. In 1882 he moved to Chicago. When the Northwestern University School of Pharmacy was established in 1886 Oldberg became its dean and professor of pharmacy. He retired from Northwestern in 1911 due to poor health.

Oldberg wrote several books and manuals including The Metric System in Medicine (1881), A Manual of Weights, Measures and Specific Gravity (1885), A Course in Home Study for Pharmacists (1891), A Laboratory Manual for Chemistry, Medical and Pharmaceutical (1893) written with John H. Long, Inorganic, General, Medical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry (1900), 1500 Prescriptions of All Kinds Right and Wrong (1901), and Pharmacy; Theoretical and Practical (1913). He was a member of the American Pharmaceutical Association, the American Chemical Society, the American Metrological Society, the National Geographic Society, and the Chemical Society of Germany among other organizations. In 1880 Oldberg was elected a member of the Committee of Revision and Publication of the Pharmacopoeia of the United States. He was appointed and reappointed to this committee for three ten-year terms.

Oldberg married Emma Parritt on May 17, 1873. The couple had three children: Arne, Olga, and Virgil. Oldberg died in Pasadena, California on February 27, 1913.

Scope and Content

The Oscar Oldberg papers consist of a few letters, several articles, lecture notes, and bound and printed volumes.

The Letters are professional in nature. They include a note from Oldberg to pharmacy students, a letter from Northwestern University President A.W. Harris updating Oldberg on the progress of the University's School of Pharmacy after Oldberg's retirement, a letter requesting Oldberg's participation in the Panama—Pacific International Exposition, a letter from Dr. E.R. Squibb, M.D. concerning the American Medical Association, and a publisher's rejection notice relating to an article written by Oldberg entitled, “A Practical Universal Money.”

The articles by Oldberg include one on the history of the School of Pharmacy, one on pharmaceutical education and legislation, and one on the adoption of the metric system. There is also a handwritten draft article proposing a pharmaceutical congress to be held in 1893 in conjunction with the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago.

Also included in the papers are class descriptions and lecture notes for four chemistry courses taught by Oldberg in the Northwestern University School of Pharmacy.

The bound and printed volumes include three notebooks of handwritten pharmaceutical notes and a physician's visiting list and notebook. There is also one volume of notes from the Sixth Decennial Convention for the Revision of Pharmacopoeia in the United States and another concerning the second meeting of the Committee of Revision and Publication of the Pharmacopoeia of the United States.

Addition: Oscar Oldberg's academic gown and hood have been added to the series, placed within one dropfront box, and shelved with the University Archives' collection of artifacts. According to Louis D. Boshes, M.D., the gown and hood also had been used on ceremonial occasions by Arne Oldberg and Eric Oldberg.

Addition: Photographs of Oscar’s wife, Emma Oldberg with daughter Olga’s son (Oscar’s grandson) has been placed in Oscar Oldberg’s photo file.

Addition: A report on the papers donated by Mrs. Mary Oldberg to the Swedish American Archives of Greater Chicago has been added to the Oscar Oldberg Papers. The report consists of ten Swedish documents, accompanied with ten brief English explanations about Oscar and Anders Oldberg. The report has been placed in Box 1, Folder 1 consisting of existing biographical materials.

Subjects

Personal Name

Oldberg, Oscar, 1846-1913--Archives

Subjects

Chemistry--Study and teaching

Pharmacy


Container List / Contents

  • Biographical Materials, 1828-1917, n.d.Box 1, Folder 1
  • Correspondence, 1877-1913Box 1, Folder 2
  • Articles by Oldberg Concerning the Northwestern University School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Education and Legislation, 1901, 1906Box 1, Folder 3
  • Course Notes and Descriptions, n.d.Box 1, Folder 4
  • World's Columbian Exposition and Pharmaceutical Congress, ca. 1893Box 1, Folder 5
  • Notes and Publications on the Metric System, 1896, n.d.Box 1, Folder 6
  • “A Practical Universal Money”, 1912Box 1, Folder 7
  • Review of, 1913Box 1, Folder 8
  • Physician's Visiting List and Notebook, 1892Box 1, Folder 9
  • Examples in Dispensing: Pharmaceutical Notes, 1888Box 1, Folder 10
  • Pharmaceutical Notes, n.d.Box 1, Folder 11
  • Pharmaceutical Notes, n.d.Box 1, Folder 12
  • Three notebooks of handwritten pharmaceutical notes and a physician's visiting list and notebook.Box 2, Folder 1
  • Notes from the Sixth Decennial Convention for the Revision of Pharmacopoeia in the United StatesBox 2, Ledger 2
  • Notes from the second meeting of the Committee of Revision and Publication of the Pharmacopoeia of the United States, 1880Box 2, Ledger 3