By: Samantha Riley, Bicentennial Intern, Class of 2020, French and Anthropology, IUPUI
When Winifred Kahmann told her mother that she wanted to become a nurse like her two sisters, she was told “two in one family is enough.” Instead, she selected another position in the medical field centered on patient care: occupational therapy.
She attended the Devereux Mansion school in Massachusetts, which was one of the first schools to offer a degree in the field. After graduation, her first position in occupational therapy was at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, but she soon after returned to Devereux to head the OT department.1
In 1924, the Indianapolis Junior League, an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism and improving the community, recruited Mrs. Kahmann to relocate to Indianapolis. She was hired to head the occupational therapy clinic at Riley Hospital for Children, where she greatly improved the program, becoming a pioneer in the field.2 The hospital, which opened in 1924, was the first in Indiana to include an occupational therapy department.
Mrs. Kahmann’s approach to occupational therapy emphasized the curative, rather than the recreational type of therapy. The intention of curative occupational therapy is to help restore injured patients to their previous state of life, rather focusing on simply restoring limb use. She trained Junior League volunteers to assist her in making the occupational therapy department a friendlier atmosphere for patients. She was praised for her success in working with volunteers and occupational therapy students; it was said that she had the unique ability to bring others to their maximum capacities, spreading her own enthusiasm and faith about the results of therapeutic occupational therapy.3
The goal of Kahmann’s occupational therapy was not to help injured patients regain the use of their limbs, but rather to help redevelop their coordination, allowing them to once again enjoy everyday activities. In the therapy for young polio patients afflicted with paralyzed muscles, Kahmann had the children create craft projects out of plastics to aid in their coordination. She said, “We do not aim at perfection in the plastics product… A healthy child is the product we seek.”
In 1934, Winifred Kahmann became the director of both the occupational therapy and physical therapy departments at Riley Hospital. Under her direction, the departments flourished, expanding and gaining recognition throughout the state and beyond. In 1938, she was instrumental in inaugurating a cerebral palsy clinic. She worked tirelessly for the IU Medical Center for 35 years, with only a brief break during World War II.3
From 1943 to 1946, Mrs. Kahmann left Riley Hospital and worked in Washington, D.C. as the Chief of the Occupational Therapy Section of the Reconditioning Consultants’ Division of the Surgeon General’s Office. The new job involved taking a pay cut, but Kahmann was determined to help in the war efforts. She set up the War Emergency Course in accredited schools, which trained about 600 occupational therapists for service in the Army, and she oversaw the therapy for wounded soldiers. She received a citation from the War Department for her meritorious service.3
Winifred Kahmann retired from the IU Medical Center in 1959. In her time as an occupational therapist, she founded the Indiana Occupational Therapy Association, and was the first president of the American Occupational Therapy Association.
She passed away at age 87 in 1982. Her value to the field of occupational therapy, to her coworkers, and to her patients will be affectionately remembered. The Indianapolis Star wrote: “Winifred Kahmann, it is true, did not become a nurse. But she has become a leader in one of the most important of the healing arts—that of giving back to the sick the ability and desire to work.”
Dr. Jane Merrill Ketcham, M.D.
Dr. Jane Merrill Ketcham lacked an interest in pursuing medicine, until one fateful day in her teenage years. The young woman was approached by her neighbor, whose wife had attempted suicide by swallowing Paris Green, a highly toxic crystalline powder with a history of being used as a rodenticide and insecticide. Ketcham, being the only one home at the time, acted fast and was able to save the woman’s life. This incident made up her mind and set her future in motion: she was determined to become a doctor.
Dr. Jane Merrill Ketcham, known as Dr. Merrill or Dr. Jane to those around her, graduated from Indiana Medical College in 1906. She practiced medicine for six years before she was hired at the Indiana University School of Medicine to teach students.  In 1934, she was promoted to Clinical Professor of Medicine, becoming one of the school’s first female faculty members.  Dr. Merrill’s career started off in obstetrics, and that remained her area of preference during her career. “It’s the only phase of medicine that deals with people’s happiness,” she told the Indianapolis Star. It is said that she delivered thousands of babies in her career.Her role in aiding women in child birth did not go unnoticed: she had a number of newborn girls named in her honor.7
Despite her early position at the university, Dr. Merrill, did not consider herself to be unique, refusing the title of “pioneer female physician.” 8
“Don’t you dare call me a pioneer woman doctor,” she told Dorothy Knisely of The Indianapolis Star in 1960, “There were many good women doctors before I was graduated in 1906…”7
Along with her devotion to medicine, Jane Merrill Ketcham was a known suffragette, desiring equality and equal rights. She focused her passion on using her medical skills to provide medicine for those who could not otherwise access it, offering healthcare free of charge to those in need. She provided home visits to unwed mothers and gave many hours to medical clinics. She often minimized her work as nothing more than was expected of her, saying “I always regarded that work as a civic duty and I enjoyed every minute of it.”7
In 1913, the Indiana University Medical School placed Dr. Merrill in charge of the flood relief hospital at Manual Training High School, where she provided free care to victims of the Indianapolis’s 1913 flood. Years later, in 1933, she once again offered flood relief, this time to the people of Jeffersonville, IN.8 “We rowed up and down the swollen river for five straight days, hunting for smallpox victims. I’ve never worked so hard in my life,” Dr. Ketcham reflected.7
Dr. Jane Merrill Ketcham retired in 1953, but she continued to call on patients for a period of time. 9 Her 54-year career in medicine touched countless lives, including those of patients, coworkers, and students. Dr. Ketcham passed away on September 23, 1970.10
Alice Fitzgerald, known for her quick mind and a passion for languages, was born in Florence, Italy in 1874. In her lifetime, she became fluent in French, German, Italian, and English. At the age of 19, attended Hopkins’ School of Nursing in Baltimore, Maryland against her family’s wishes, graduating in 1906.  After graduation, she assisted in earthquake relief in Messina, Italy as a member of the Florence Branch of the Italian Red Cross. She returned to Hopkins in 1909 and obtained the position of head nurse at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in New York City.
Following the Civil War, nursing training schools began to appear across the United States. In 1914, Dr. Charles P. Emerson, Dean of the IU Medical School, hired Alice Fitzgerald as the first director of the Indiana University Training School for Nurses. It was the 15th nursing school to open in Indiana.
Shortly before Alice Fitzgerald joined Indiana University, IU began building Long Hospital in 1911. It was an unfinished building in an unattractive area west of the city dump, making it difficult to start up the nursing program. Fitzgerald recalled: “When I arrived in Indiana, the Hospital seemed so lonely and small.” 13 Nevertheless, she did not give up hope.
She immediately went to work to create the best nursing program she could. Fitzgerald equipped the hospital with the best possible technologies, planned the nursing school, created its curriculum, designed the nurses’ uniforms and caps, and oversaw the admittance of the first nursing students. The initial school’s staff was small: there was one instructor, two head nurses, a night supervisor, and operating room supervisor, and seven staff nurses. In its first year, the training school admitted five students. Her admission requirements were strict, but that was because they were based on the guidelines established by the country’s best nursing training schools.13
According to Thurman Rice, a physician on the medical campus, Fitzgerald left the Nurses’ Training School in 1915 because she did not like the rural surroundings.13 Despite her short-lived career at the hospital, she set the foundations for an extraordinary nursing program that continues to flourish to this day.
After leaving her position, Alice Fitzgerald served as an American Nurse with the British Expeditionary Forces in France, aiding soldiers wounded in World War I. When America entered the fight, she resigned from her position and joined the American Red Cross, serving in France as chief nurse and in Italy as an aid for Venetian refugees. After the war, Fitzgerald stayed in Europe and served as Chief Nurse of the American Red Cross Commission in Europe. 12
Fitzgerald was dedicated to aiding nursing efforts around the world. She organized local nursing schools and public health nursing services in Poland, the Philippines, Czechoslovakia, Romania, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Montenegro, and Albania, and she created the International School for Public Health Nurses for the Florence Nightingale International Foundation in London.12 She received a Florence Nightingale Medal from the Red Cross and decorations from China, England, France, Serbia, Poland, Italy, Russia, and Hungary for her work.11
Alice Fitzgerald had a number of other nursing positions in her lifetime. She was the director of nurses in New York at the Polyclinic Hospital from 1930-1936, but resigned from the position with the purpose of writing memoirs and raising marmosets. However, she did not retire from active nursing until 1948, when she moved to a nursing home in New York City until her death in 1962.12
Ethel P. Clarke
Ethel Palmer Clarke was born in Lynton, Devon County, England. She studied nursing at University of Maryland Training School for Nurses, graduating in 1906.  After graduation, she became the superintendent of DeSoto Sanitarium in Jacksonville, Florida. In 1911, Clarke returned to the University Hospital at the University of Maryland, taking on the position of superintendent of nurses. In 1914, she attended Teacher’s College at Columbia University.14 Clarke, unlike many women of the time, decided to continue her work as a nurse after marriage.
After the resignation of Alice Fitzgerald in 1915, Ethel P. Clarke became the Director of the Indiana University Training School for Nurses, later renamed as the Indiana University School of Nursing.14 Her responsibilities included hospital nursing services and educating students. Clarke herself designed the Training School for Nurses school pin, as well as changed the nurses’ uniforms to include a cape.15
Under Clarke’s guidance, the school grew. She planned and organized entrance exams for potential nursing students.15 Under her direction the program grew from 12 students to 168. On June 13, 1917, two years after Clarke became the Training School for Nurses’ Director, the school’s first commencement was held with five students receiving the Graduate Nurse Diploma from Indiana University.
Students knew Mrs. Clarke as ““very stately, dignified, and reserved and commanded the respect of everyone. She was also extremely critical and strict. At the same time, she was most understanding and fair.”15 She was passionate about creating dedicated and honorable nurses. In 1922, six nursing students approached Clarke with the interest in creating a nursing sorority to encourage scholarship and high achievement. Clarke believed this to be a wonderful idea and provided her full support, on account of it being a society based on academic scholarship, leading to the creation of Sigma Theta Tau. Because of her support and work with the chapter founders, she became known as the mother of the chapter.
Nursing students in the Training School were required to live on site, but finding housing proved to be difficult. Nurses lived in a variety of situations, from Long Hospital to cottages nearby. It was decided that there needed to be a larger, more unified location for the nursing students, thus in 1917, the school began to build the Ball Nurses’ Residence, which is known today as Ball Hall. As the director of the nursing program, Mrs. Clarke oversaw the design of the Ball Nurses’ Residence. She selected the furnishings and equipment for the new residence hall herself.15
Ethel P. Clarke served as the director of the nursing program until 1931. After her resignation, she and her husband moved to Bridgeport, Connecticut, where she continued her work as the director of nurses at the Bridgeport Hospital.15
Emily Holmquist, Ed.D., RN
Emily Holmquist devoted her professional life to improving nursing education programs and encouraging nurses to conduct research. Under her instruction, the IU School of Nursing increased the number of academic programs and student attendance numbers from 1957 to 1973. In a 1998 interview with Barbara Norton, Holmquist’s advice to new nursing students was: “The important thing for a nurse is that she knows how to be caring, to be caring, and to give the kind of care that being caring demands.”
Emily Holmquist graduated with a diploma in nursing from the Mount Auburn Hospital School of Nursing in 1931. Following graduation, she began her career by serving as Head Nurse in Surgical Nursing at Vanderbilt University Hospital, Nashville, Tennessee. In 1935, Holmquist decided to continue her education and enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Education in 1941 and a Master of Science in Nursing Education in 1944.20
In 1957, Emily Holmquist was hired as the first dean of the new School of Nursing, previously known as the IU Training School for Nurses. Up until this time, the training school was not its own autonomous entity, but rather was part of the School of Medicine. Ms. Holmquist worked tirelessly to improve the new School of Nursing. She succeeded in persuading Indiana University to combine its three regional nursing programs, creating a unified program across IU campuses with the headquarters in Indianapolis.21
Under Holmquist’s direction, the school developed programs for master’s and doctoral degrees, allowing nurses to pursue advanced education and research in nursing.20 The Master of Science degree in Nursing Education featured three curriculum areas: curricula for preparing hospital nursing service personnel, curricula for preparing school of nursing personnel, and curricula preparing clinical nursing personnel, which later evolved to include courses on maternity and pediatric nursing. The master’s degree curriculum was later revised to two major areas: preparation of hospital nursing service personnel and preparation of school of nursing personnel.22
Emily Holmquist considered the construction of a new nursing building to be one of her greatest achievements during her deanship.19 With the expansion of the school and increasing enrollment numbers, a new building was needed for the growing school. The application for the creation of a new building was submitted in 1966; at the time, the IU School of Nursing had a total of six classrooms and three conference rooms of its own, all found in the basement of Ball Residence Hall. Many student spaces were transformed to makeshift classrooms or faculty offices. The situation was unsatisfactory for both students and faculty; students resented faculty members being present in their living and social spaces, and faculty disliked the noise associated with the residence hall. The request for a new building was fulfilled and the new IU School of Nursing building was constructed.22
“I couldn’t have accomplished anything if I hadn’t had help,” Holmquist said in her interview with Norton. She recounted that under her direction as Dean, the School of Nursing faculty rose from 12 members in one year, to 26 the following year, and 36 faculty members the year after. She was proud to have worked with faculty she described as “very strong and very good.”19
Holmquist retired from her role as Dean of Nursing in 1973, but she continued teaching nursing classes at the IU School of Nursing until 1977. She was beloved by, and loved, her students and faculty members.20
“I liked the students,” Holmquist told Barbara Norton in a 1998 interview. “Once in the term every year I’d meet with the students to have a kind of free-for-all rolling discussion. I enjoyed them.”19
In her career, Holmquist did her best to promote the integration of nursing research and nursing education. She was a co-founder of the first peer-reviewed research journal in nursing, Research Nursing. After retiring from Indiana University, Holmquist served as the founding executive director of the American Associate of Colleges of Nursing in Washington, DC, guiding the Board of Directors in making connections with government agencies and interpreting the ACCN to higher education administrators across the U.S.20
Emily Holmquist was honored throughout her career with various rewards for her extraordinary work. She received a 1989 Sagamore of the Wabash award and in 1993 she became the first recipient of the Indiana University School of Nursing Lifetime Achievement Award. Holmquist passed away on September 6, 2000.21 Her legacy lives on through the Emily Holmquist/ Dorcas Rock Brewer Scholarship, which is awarded to undergraduate students each year.
Dr. Elizabeth Grossman, Ph.D.
Elizabeth K. Grossman’s career in nursing began in 1944 when she saw a bill-board that read “Be a cadet nurse…” She was grieving over the death of her husband of one year who had been killed in World War II; she desired change in her life. She thought that becoming a nurse was the challenge she needed to get herself back on her feet.
Grossman had a strong background in science. In 1944, she graduated from Hunter College in New York City with a Bachelor’s degree in zoology and minors in meteorology and botany. She had a promising position in a chemical lab, but she found that the human side of nursing was much more to her liking.19 Grossman earned her Master’s in Nursing degree from the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University in 1947 and a second Master’s degree in Nursing Education from Indiana University in 1972. Her first patient was a woman who gave birth to a stillborn baby. She spent a couple of hours with her, which was frowned upon by her superiors.19
“They told me I’d never make it as a nurse! But this woman had lost a baby, and she wanted someone to talk to, so I listened to her. She needed that,” Grossman reflected in 1988.19
After graduating from Case Western Reserve University, she became the head nurse in maternity at University Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio. Grossman’s interest in maternity nursing stayed with her throughout her career. In her time at University Hospital, she learned about natural childbirth from a mid-wife. At the time, in the ‘50s, mothers were sedated during childbirth and babies were born under the influence of the sedation. Grossman slowly began to introduce the concept of natural childbirth to her nurses and interested patients, as well as pioneered the movement to bring fathers into the delivery room. To some, this work was considered rebellious, but she considered them to be “calculated risks.” 19
In 1953, Elizabeth Grossman remarried and moved to Indianapolis with her husband. Initially, as was common for married women in the time, she did not work.
“Oh boy, that was Dullsville,” Grossman said of not working. “I sat around and played bridge and had conversations about furniture wax. You can only do so much of that!” 19
Ready to return to nursing, Elizabeth Grossman was hired at Methodist Hospital as head of maternity and briefly taught at DePauw University. In 1959, she joined the Indiana University faculty. She held positions as assistant professor, associate professor, maternity nursing chair, and professor until 1973, when she became the dean of Indiana University School of Nursing.
In her position as Dean, Grossman initiated distance education courses for the Master’s program and helped the nursing school expand across Indiana University campuses. It was under her direction that the school developed a doctoral program and the first clinical nurse specialist program in Indiana. She retired from Indiana University in 1988.19
Elizabeth K. Grossman’s work had a lasting effect on Indiana. She was honored in 2000 with the Sagamore of the Wabash, a prestigious honor from the Governor of Indiana, given to Hoosiers who have significantly contributed to the State of Indiana. On September 24, 2007, Grossman passed away at age 84. 19
 Lewis, Carl. “Hoosier Therapist,” The Indianapolis Star, August 29, 1948.
 Owen, Mary. “Winifred Conrick Kahmann,” Women in Medicine at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis.
Kahmann, Winifred, 1924-1975. UA 056 Box 3, IUPUI University Library Special Collections and Archives.
 Newell, Robert. “Polio Therapists Restore Muscles,” The Indianapolis Star, September 15, 1952.
 Lawless, Brenda. “IU Occupational Therapy: A Reputation of Service and Academic Excellence,” Impacts, 2017.
 “Winifred Kahmann dies; pioneer in therapy field,” The Indianapolis Star, April 7, 1982.
 Knisely, Dorothy. “Dr. Jane, After Long Career, Semi-Retired,” The Indianapolis Star, April 24, 1960.
 Owen, Mary. “Dr. Jane Merrill Ketcham,” The Medical Trail Booklet.
 “Jane Merrill Ketcham, M.D.” IUPUI Office for Women. https://ofw.iupui.edu/Leadership/Online-Archive-Women-Creating-Excellence-at-IUPUI/Women-Creating-Excellence/ketcham
 “Dr. Jane M. Ketcham, Dies Here at Age 90.” The Indianapolis Star, September 24, 1970.
 “This Way Forward: Alice Fizgerald (1876-1962)”, John Hopkins Nursing. https://magazine.nursing.jhu.edu/2014/07/this-way-forward-alice-fitzgerald-1876-1962/
 “Alice Fitzgerald Collection,” Medical Archives of the John Hopkins Medical Institutions. https://medicalarchives.jhmi.edu:8443/papers/fitzgerald.html
 Owen, Mary. “Alice Fitzgerald,” Women in Medicine at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis.
 Notice of Death: Ethel P. Clarke, UA 025, Box 14, IUPUI Faculty Council Records, IUPUI University Library Special Collections and Archives.
 Owen, Mary. “Ethel P. Clarke,” Medical Trail Booklet.
 “Our History,” School of Nursing. https://nursing.iupui.edu/about/history/index.shtml
 MSS 51, IUPUI University Library Special Collections and Archives.
 “Site 3: Ball Nurses’ Residence,” Women Building IUPUI: A Walking Trail. http://www.iupui.edu/~history/OLDSITE/trail/3.htm
 Holmquist, Emily interviewed by Barbara Norton. “Interview of Emily Holmquist.” Indiana University School of Nursing. Ruth Lilly Special Collections and Archives, University Library, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis. Retrieved from eArchives, http://hdl.handle.net/2450/6889.
 “Emily Holmquist.” Indiana University Honors & Awards. https://honorsandawards.iu.edu/search-awards/honoree.shtml?honoreeID=133
 “Emily Holmquist, Ed.D., RN.” IUPUI Office for Women. https://ofw.iupui.edu/page(4347da05-9612-4aa9-981a-0df968b1449a)
 Nursing at Indiana University: 75 Years at the Heart of Health Care. Bloomington: Indiana University Printing Services, 1989.
 “Emily Holmquist was former dean, instructor at IU School of Nursing.” The Indianapolis Star, 8 Sept. 2000.
 Holladay, Ruth. “Nursing school dean hangs up cap, crowning lengthy career,” The Indianapolis Star, June 29, 1988.
 “Dr. Elizabeth K. Grossman,” The Pulse of Indiana, vol. 2, issue 2, 2008.
I was very impressed and motivated by the excellent penmanship and historical accuracy in this article.
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