Doing 'True Science': The Early History of the 'Institutum Divi Thomae,' 1935-1951
Catholic Historical Review
This essay focuses on the origins and early history of the Institutum Divi Thomae (hereafter referred to as the IDT or Institutum), thus describing one particularly rich episode illustrating the relationship between American Catholicism and science during the middle of the twentieth century. The IDT was established by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati in 1935; its faculty and students, while working in the area of cancer research, published hundreds of scientific and technical papers, developed a number of commercial products, and received considerable publicity in both the religious and secular press during the first two decades of its existence. However, with its gradual decline beginning in the 1950s and the closing of its doors by the 1980s, the IDT vanished without a trace from historians' radar screens.
Yet if we are to understand more fully the IDT's accomplishments, the place of science within Catholic culture in twentieth-century America, and the science-religion relationship in an operational institutional setting, this story becomes an important one.
Copyright © 2002, Catholic University of America Press
Catholic University of America Press
Heitmann, John Alfred, "Doing 'True Science': The Early History of the 'Institutum Divi Thomae,' 1935-1951" (2002). History Faculty Publications. 71.