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1926: Two-year School of Medical Sciences established

A college of Medicine was on the list of colleges envisioned by the Board of Governors in 1909.  In 1911, the University and the City of Saskatoon signed an agreement to build a teaching hospital, and a money bylaw providing $485,000 for the construction of this hospital passed in 1913.  Excavation began, but the end of Saskatoon’s boom together with the start of the war meant that the project had to be abandoned, and the excavation was filled in. 

While the plans for a medical school were not yet feasible, particularly during the war, it was felt that a bacteriologist was needed in Saskatoon since “there was much concern at that time over ‘sore throats and diptheria.’”1   Dr. W. Stewart Lindsay came to the University as Professor of Bacteriology in 1919.  Dr. Lindsay’s laboratory, in one of the greenhouses, was the first medical teaching facility in what would become in the School of Medical Sciences in 1926.  Between 1926 and 1956, students at the University of Saskatchewan were able to take two years of basic pre-medical classes prior to enrolment at a major medical school in Canada for the final two years of instruction.  Originally the School had laboratory and classroom space in the greenhouses and header house; it moved to the newly expanded Field Husbandry (later Crop Science) Building in 1937, and to its own building in 1950. The School became a college in 1952, and was renamed the College of Medicine the following year. Thanks to the opening of the University Hospital in 1955, and to its acceptance as a teaching and research centre for the College, in 1956 students were able to begin taking their entire medical course in Saskatchewan. 

Related Collections

College of Medicine Dean’s Office fonds, RG 2087


1926a: Class of 1931 in front of header house. Photograph Collection, A-5742.


Buchan, pp. 1-4.
Guide to Holdings, p. 78.
On Campus News, 1 March 1996, p. 8.
1. Buchan, p. 2.
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