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Ralph Blocksma Collection, 1933-2003

By Ed Gerritsen, June 2010

Collection Overview

Title: Ralph Blocksma Collection, 1933-2003

ID: COLL/507

Creator: Blocksma, Ralph

Extent: 1.75 Cubic Feet. More info below.

Arrangement: Folder level description

Date Acquired: 00/00/2009

Abstract

Plastic and reconstructive surgeon (specialized in repairs for cleft lips and palates, decubitus ulcers, and burns), and served as a medical missionary. The collection includes biographical materials; diaries; writings; diplomas; awards; publications; speeches; lectures; correspondence; newspaper clippings; "Letters from Pakistan"; photographs (photographic images of surgical procedures are restricted); and materials from his leadership in the Christian Medical Society, Medical Assistance Program (MAP), Board of Affordable Medicines in Africa (AMFA); Oral Cleft Clinic; plus other medical and plastic surgery associations and societies.

Biographical Note

(1914 - 2001)

Ralph Blocksma was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1914. He was a student at Calvin College and graduated with his BA in 1936. He later went on to become a doctor and served on many medical societies and boards and became a medical missionary. Ralph spent a great deal of time and money to develop plastic surgery in third-world countries. He was married to Ruth Naomi Enss in 1940.  Ralph served as a captain in the US Army from 1942-1945. He was a plastic surgeon in the Army and worked in evacuation hospitals in England, France, and Germany. In 1949 he had a career in international medicine. Ralph Blocksma lived in Grand Rapids but died in Jacksonville, Florida. He was eighty-seven years old when he died in 2001.

Administrative Information

Alternate Extent Statement: 4 Boxes

Acquisition Source: Ruth Blocksma, 2009


Box and Folder Listing

Series 1: Biographical informationAdd to your cart.
Box 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Blocksma family genealogy --- [1967?]Add to your cart.
Folder 2: Curriculum Vitae --- 1942 and 1976Add to your cart.
Folder 3: "Essays on Being Little in the 1920s" --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 4: Autobiography --- 1933Add to your cart.
Folder 5: Military service documents --- 1942-1949Add to your cart.
Folder 6: Surgery record during military service --- 1944-1945Add to your cart.
Folder 7: World War II diary --- 1944-1945Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Reminiscences of service during World War II --- 1945-1989Add to your cart.
Folder 9: Record of surgeries performed in Pakistan --- 1952Add to your cart.
Folder 10: Copies of diplomas and awards --- 1941-1976Add to your cart.
Folder 11: Awards --- 1977-2000Add to your cart.
Folder 12: Oral Cleft Clinic, surgery results and related materials --- 1972-1982Add to your cart.
Folder 13: Log of Caribbean - Mexican travels --- 1976Add to your cart.
Folder 14: Letter to his mother on her 103rd birthday --- 1989Add to your cart.
Folder 15: State of Michigan Senate Concurrent Resolution Honoring Ralph Blocksma, MD --- 1991Add to your cart.
Folder 16: List of scientific publications and lectures --- [1992?]Add to your cart.
Folder 17: Obituaries, funeral service programs, and death certificate --- 2001Add to your cart.
Series 2: PublicationsAdd to your cart.
Box 2Add to your cart.
Folder 1-2: "Letters from Pakistan: A Post-Partition Medical Saga," Volume 1 and 2 --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 3: Letters from Pakistan: A Post-Partition Medical Saga --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 4-5: Scientific papers --- 1949-1987Add to your cart.
Folder 6: "Cosmetic Surgery and the Whole Man" --- 1966Add to your cart.
Folder 7: "All in a Life's Work: Odyssey of a Plastic Surgeon" --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Articles re: silicone research --- 1963Add to your cart.
Folder 9: Articles re: medical service --- 1951-1986Add to your cart.
Folder 10: Material re: Bougainvillea Clinic for Plastic Surgery --- 1977-1988Add to your cart.
Folder 11: Material re: early mission work with the financial assistance of the Henry Beets Mission Society --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 12Add to your cart.
Item 1: "Historical and Philosophical Concepts of Plastic Surgery" --- 1984Add to your cart.
Item 2: "Reflections on Medical Practice Abroad" --- 1984Add to your cart.
Item 3: "Ferris N. Smith: The Man and His Art" --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Item 4: "Conceptual Changes in Teaching Plastic Surgery" --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 13: "Highway Bloodshed, Big Business and Bombast" --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 14: Speeches given at International Conference on Medical Missions --- 1960 and 1968Add to your cart.
Folder 15: Speeches --- 1975-1990Add to your cart.
Series 3: MiscellaneousAdd to your cart.
Box 3Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Historical summary of Grand Rapids residency program in plastic surgery --- [1981?]Add to your cart.
Folder 2Add to your cart.
Item 1: Correspondence re: British Virgin Islands Workshop in Plastic Surgery --- 1992-1996Add to your cart.
Item 2: Photograph of Blocksma --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 3Add to your cart.
Item 1: Correspondence with Denis Burkitt and related materials --- 1977-1994Add to your cart.
Item 2: Photographs Burkitt and Blocksma --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 4: Correspondence --- 1940-1995Add to your cart.
Folder 5: Correspondence with Florentine Van Tiem re: St. Lucia Projects --- 1978Add to your cart.
Folder 6: Letters from patients --- 1993 and [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 7: Article written by a patient --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Patient storiesAdd to your cart.
Folder 9: "Orbital Floor Reconstruction Following Blunt Facial Trauma: A Twenty-Year Experience" --- 1988Add to your cart.
Folder 10: Materials re: Affordable Medicines for Africa: Practical Witness to Christ's Love --- 1970-2003Add to your cart.
Folder 11Add to your cart.
Item 1: "Survey Report: Sudan Interior Mission Medical Installations Nigeria, West Africa," with photographs --- 1974Add to your cart.
Item 2: Photo of Liberian President William R. Tolbert (massacred shortly after photo taken) --- 1974Add to your cart.
Folder 12: Taiwan Trauma Symposium, with photographs of Blocksma and M. Samuel Noordhof --- 1984 and 1996Add to your cart.
Folder 13: Photograph of the Board of Directors of the Van Andel Institute --- 1996Add to your cart.
Folder 14Add to your cart.
Item 1: "Ralph Blocksma Endowed Lectureship Donor Listing" --- 1991Add to your cart.
Item 2: Photograph of C. Everett Koop --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 15: Publications re: visit to the San Blas Islands --- 1958-1960Add to your cart.
Folder 16: Tribute to Ferris N. Smith --- 1990Add to your cart.
Folder 17: Ralph Blocksma Award Recipients by MAP International --- 1978-1990Add to your cart.
Folder 18: Photographs of Blocksma --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 19: Sculptures done by RB? --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 20: "The Collected Poetry, Prose, Essays, Epistles and Pure Piffle: From the Lifetime Practice of a Plastic Surgeon" --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 21: Newspaper clippings --- 1959-1992Add to your cart.
Series 4: PhotographsAdd to your cart.
Box 3Add to your cart.
Folder 2Add to your cart.
Item 1: Correspondence re: British Virgin Islands Workshop in Plastic Surgery --- 1992-1996Add to your cart.
Item 2: photograph of Blocksma --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 3Add to your cart.
Item 1: Correspondence with Denis Burkitt and related materials --- 1977-1994Add to your cart.
Item 2: photographs Burkitt and Blocksma --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 11: "Survey Report: Sudan Interior Mission Medical Installations Nigeria, West Africa"Add to your cart.
Item 1: photographs --- 1974Add to your cart.
Item 2: photo of Liberian President William R. Tolbert (massacred shortly after photo taken) --- 1974Add to your cart.
Folder 12: Taiwan Trauma Symposium, with photographs of Blocksma and M. Samuel Noordhof --- 1984 and 1996Add to your cart.
Folder 13: Photograph of the Board of Directors of the Van Andel Institute --- 1996Add to your cart.
Folder 14Add to your cart.
Item 1: “Ralph Blocksma Endowed Lectureship Donor Listing" --- 1991Add to your cart.
Item 2: photograph of C. Everett Koop --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Folder 18: Photographs of Ralph Blocksma --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Box 4Add to your cart.
Folder 1-5: RESTRICTED: Photographic images of surgical procedures; available to medical personnel and others by special permission --- [undated]Add to your cart.
Access Restriction: RESTRICTED