Guide to the St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing unit coordinators meeting minutes

Table of Contents

Collection Overview

Collection Inventory+/-

Biographical Note/Historical Note

Content Description

Collection Use

Administrative Information


Collection Overview +/-

Title: St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing unit coordinators meeting minutes
Dates: 1936-1969 (inclusive)
Collection Number: ACC-060
Summary: This collection consists of St. Mark's Hospital (Salt Lake City, Utah) School of Nursing unit coordinators minutes of meetings held between 1939-1969. Material include minutes and various meeting attachments.
Repository: Westminster College, Giovale Library
1840 South 1300 East
Salt Lake City, Utah 84105
Phone: (801) 832-2250

Collection Inventory +/-

box 1, folder 1: 1939
box 1, folder 2: 1940
box 1, folder 3: 1941
box 1, folder 4: 1942
box 1, folder 5: 1943
box 1, folder 6: 1944
box 1, folder 7: 1945
box 1, folder 8: 1946
box 1, folder 9: 1947
box 1, folder 10: 1948
box 1, folder 11: 1949
box 1, folder 12: 1950
box 1, folder 13: 1951
box 1, folder 14: 1953
box 1, folder 15: 1954
box 1, folder 16: 1956
box 1, folder 17: 1957
box 1, folder 18: 1958
box 1, folder 19: 1959
box 1, folder 20: 1960
box 1, folder 21: 1961
box 1, folder 21: 1962
box 2, folder 1: 1963
box 2, folder 2: 1964
box 2, folder 3: 1965
box 2, folder 4: 1966
box 2, folder 5: 1967
box 2, folder 6: 1968
box 2, folder 7: 1969

Biographical Note/Historical Note +/-

St. Mark's Hospital opened in 1872 under the direction of the Episcopal Church in a two room adobe house on 500 East and 300 South in Salt Lake City. Two years later it admitted its first patients. The 1879 expansion saw the purchase of land and the erection of a new building with room for fifteen beds to better treat the infirm miner lead poisoning, industrial injuries, and typhoid fever.

St. Marks Hospital School of Nursing: On March 24, 1893, the St. Mark's Hospital Board of Directors authorized the establishment of a training school for nurses in connection with the hospital. In 1894, a new 50-bed St. Mark's hospital opened with a nurses training program at 200 North 700 West. Twenty-three year old, Miss Mary Edith Newitt, a recent graduate of New York City's St. Luke's Training School, served as the head nurse. The first class of four nurses graduated from the two year program in 1896. While St. Mark's Nursing School began as a two-year program, a third year was added in 1898. Between 1892 and 1898, the hospital more than doubled its capacity when it added a new wing to house the surgical, medical, and women's wards.

The nursing students were initially housed in a cottage owned by the hospital on Reed Street, later they lived in the basement of the new wing, and finally they moved into a new three-story residence constructed in 1906. The Nurses Home was opened on May 8, 1907, as a memorial to Episcopal Bishop Abel Leonard. Its first floor apartments housed the head nurse, the assistant head nurse, and the night nurse plus a living room, while the second and third floors housed the nursing students.

The school's curriculum evolved as state and national standards and trends changed. Initially, the program required extensive clinical training and little classroom work. New students were assigned to the hospital a day after their arrival. Student nurses, known as probationers, spent their first year assisting in general cleaning, food preparation, and other tasks as well as nursing. Each nurse was assigned to a particular ward on regular rotations. Between 1896 and 1920, more than 200 nurses graduated from St. Mark's. Students worked twelve hours per day and attended classes in the evening. Students were provided board and lodging, reasonable laundry and a monthly allowance of $5 for the purchase of uniforms and textbooks and to meet other expenses. In 1927, requirements were tightened requiring high school diplomas for students to be admitted into the program. From 1914 to 1966, clinical work requirements fell from seventy-six hours per week to twenty-eight hours while total classroom hours increased from 208 to 1,543.

Between 1935 and 1950, the need for nurses increased dramatically as the number of patients in U.S. hospitals doubled while the number of stateside nurses declined as more nurses joined military service during World War II. The U.S. Congress responded by creating the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps as an incentive to increase the number of students in the program by providing financial aid to nursing students. Additionally, St. Mark's Nursing School created its own incentive by making it possible for students to gain university credit at the school. Students could graduate with a Bachelor of Sciences by taking courses in conjunction with the University of Utah. However, this program ended in 1948 when the University tried to gain control of St. Mark's Nursing Program. St. Mark's declined the University's offer and instead became academically affiliated with Westminster College that same year.

The diversity of the school's student body broadened with the addition of the first graduating African American student (Nancy Bankhead) in 1955, and the first graduating male student (Kenneth Ross Church) in 1963. The 1960s saw a national decline in the supply of highly skilled nurses.

On August 15, 1968, the Board of Directors of St. Mark's Hospital voted to terminate the Diploma Program of the St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing as of June 1970. In an effort to build support for the program, Westminster College and St. Mark's Nursing School commenced a baccalaureate-nursing program together, completing the transition in 1970, in time for the first Westminster students to graduate from the program in 1972.

Dr. Galen O. Belden (secretary of the medical staff at St. Mark's Hospital) established a memorial scholarship in 1991 shortly after his wife's death. The Irene Bunch Belden Memorial Nursing Scholarship is awarded to nursing students at Westminster College who have completed their freshman year and demonstrate financial need. In the 2009-2010 year, 12 student nurses were each awarded $3,100.

More information on the current Westminster College School of Nursing and Health Sciences is available online.

Sources of information for this biographical/historical note:

  • Felkner, Lottie. A century of caring : 1895-1995, St. Mark's-Westminster School of Nursing (Salt Lake City, Utah : Westminster College of Salt Lake City, 1995), p. 1.
  • Felkner, Lottie and Mildren Larsen. St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing story (Salt Lake City, Utah : St. Mark's Hospital Nurses' Alumni Association, 1970).
  • Sillito, John "A conflict and contributions : women in churches, 1847-1920", in Women in Utah history : paradigm or paradox, edited by Patricia Lyn Scott and Linda Thatcher. (Logan : Utah State University Press, 2005), p. 110-111.
  • Westminster College website, viewed November 20, 2014.
  • Willes, Laura G. "St. Mark's Nospital : excerpts from St. Mark's Hospital Nursing School, a history (hospital)", in St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing administrative records, 1913-1969, ACC-066A, Giovale Library Archives, Westminster College, Salt Lake City, Utah.)
  • Willes, Laura G. "Untitled speech given to the Meeting of the Utah State Nurses Association, April 30, 1927", in St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing administrative records, 1913-1969, ACC-066A, Giovale Library Archives, Westminster College, Salt Lake City, Utah)

Content Description +/-

This collection consists of St. Mark's Hospital (Salt Lake City, Utah) School of Nursing unit coordinators minutes of meetings held between 1939-1969. Material include minutes and various meeting attachments.

The minutes generally describe meeting date and place, attendance (who was present and absent), and issues discussed. Some of the topics addressed include their duties and responsibilities, proper care of medical instruments, and patient issues (treatment, etc.). For instance, on March 9, 1944, the meeting addressed nurses who were being admitted into the nursing program with slightly below average Pathology grades (some had failed). They decided that they would no longer admit any "borderline girls", and that school should be the applicant's priority, not work.

The number of meetings range from 2 to 24 per year. The lengths of the minutes vary from one page to multiple pages. Typically, the minutes are typed. The earlier records (from late 1939 through 1942) are handwritten. Some of the earlier records have faded and are difficult to read.

During this 30-year period, the titles of the minutes changed six times. First, the minutes were identified as the "Minutes of Head Nurses Meetings (1939-1953)." Next they were listed as the "Minutes of Head and Staff Nurses Meetings (1954-56)." In 1957, they were called the "Minutes of Head Nurse Group," while between 1958–1964, they were called "Minutes of Head Nurse and Supervisory Committee." Between 1965–1966, they were classified as "Minutes of Head Nurse Meetings," and finally from 1967-1969 they were titled "Minutes of unit coordinators Meetings".

Various documents were attached to the minutes, usually supplementing the issues being discussed including St. Mark's School of Nursing's philosophy, a disaster plan, a plan for updating ward administration, a document on "Surgical Prep," and a student nurses' orientation to hospital wards.

Also included in the collection is a letter from Galen O. Belden, Secretary of the Medical Staff, to Miss M. K. Haugsten, Superintendent of Nursing, dated January 5, 1945, regarding nursing instruction. The letter refers to the December 26, 1944 meeting of the Medical Staff. These minutes from that meeting were not found in the collection.

The minutes in the collection end in 1969 during the transition from the St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing program to the new St. Mark's - Westminster College School of Nursing baccalaureate program.

Gaps in the collection: A "list of unfindables" was created for 1942, showing a gap in the minutes between June 15, 1942 and January 1943. Minutes from October 25, 1943 were listed as being included, but were not found. No explanation was given for the missing minutes for the years of 1952 and 1955.

Collection Use +/-

Restrictions on Access:

Open to public research.

Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.

Twenty-four hours advance notice is encouraged.

Restrictions on Use:

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.

Permission to publish material must be obtained from the director of the Giovale Library.

Preferred Citation:

St. Mark's Hospital School of Nursing unit coordinators meeting minutes, 1936-1969, ACC-060, Giovale Library Archives, Westminster College, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Administrative Information +/-


Arranged chronologically.

Processing Note:

Processed by Joshua Ivie in October 2003. The minutes were originally arranged in reverse chronological order. Upon processing, the minutes were arranged in straight chronological order with one year per folder. Prior to final processing, a complete listing of all minutes was created and reviewed. When checking dates, previously unidentified minutes were found that had not been previously listed. They have been included in the series and properly arranged.


St. Mark's Hospital (Salt Lake City, Utah). School of Nursing


Collection materials are in English.


0.6 linear feet

Language of the Finding Aid:


Author of the Finding Aid:

Finding aid written October 2003 by Joshua Ivie; revised and expanded November 2014 by Sarah Shaw.

EAD Creation Date:

2014 November 20 by Sarah Shaw


Describing Archives : A Content Standard (DACS)



Related Material:

Related collections and photographs in Giovale Library Archives:

Subjects +/-

Corporate Names:

St. Mark's Hospital (Salt Lake City, Utah). School of Nursing--Archives

Subject Terms:

Nursing--Study and teaching--History--Sources
Nursing administrators--Utah--Salt Lake City--History--Sources
Nursing schools--Utah--Salt Lake City--History--Sources

Form or Genre Terms:


Personal Names:

Belden, Galen O., 1901-1994
Haugsten, Martha K.

Geographical Names:

Salt Lake City (Utah)--History--Sources