Since 2016, the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Canada Consolidated Archives has participated in the medical artifacts cataloguing project with St. Joseph’s Health Care in London, Ontario. As part of this project, 17 university students have acquired skills in museum registration, and many artifacts have been cleaned, labelled, photographed, and catalogued.
It’s been a fun project, as we’ve collaborated with the hospital staff, Noelle Tangredi, on two museum exhibits: one at the Provincial Legislature, and the other at Museum London. Noelle does a wonderful job of preparing medical artifact displays in the hospital exhibit space in Zone A, Level 1, off the main corridor closest to Richmond Street. We were so pleased that this space was officially opened by Sister Jane Marie Stock of our Congregation. Sister Jane Marie became the business manager and personnel director at St. Joseph’s Hospital in London, serving in this role from 1955-1966. From 1966-1979, she was the Assistant Executive Director of Financial and General Services at St. Joseph’s Hospital, and served as Superior at the hospital from 1975-1976. She also served as a member of many committees and boards including St. Joseph’s Health Centre, London and St. Joseph’s Health Centre Foundation of London.
Our Congregation donated powder coated steel shelving for artifacts storage, and our Congregational Archivist obtained funding from the Catholic Archives Group for a museum database so that catalogue records of artifacts are easily searchable. She also developed a manual for use in cataloguing the collection. In exchange for our support, the hospital has repatriated archival records from the period during which the Sisters administered the hospital, for safekeeping and long-term preservation in our archives. To us, this project has been a model of collaboration and love for the history of the Sisters.
Because of the pandemic, the medical artifacts cataloguing project has been on hiatus. We look forward to the day we can return to continue this important work.
Please enjoy this article from St. Joseph’s Health Care about this collection of intriguing medical implements and devices, which were used during the period that the Sisters ran the hospital. St. Joseph’s Hospital was founded by the Sisters on October 15, 1888 and administered by them until it became St. Joseph’s Health Centre in 1993.